A BABY born in Spain is thought to be one of the first cases of a child catching the virus while still in the mother’s womb.
The newborn has been put under observation but is said to be in good health.
The mother tested positive for the virus when she arrived at the San Jorge University Hospital in Huesca (Aragon) to give birth. Her baby was then tested when born, and was also positive.
If this case is confirmed, it would be one of the first cases of transmission of the virus during pregnancy worldwide.
According to local newspaper El Heraldo, doctors are analysing the case to see if the baby really was infected before birth rather than soon after.
But all coronavirus protocols had been followed and the child was tested immediately, pointing to it being a case of prenatal infection.
This would be extremely unusual, say experts from the Spanish Society of Neonatology (SENEO).
The society pointed out that infected babies do not generally show severe symptoms of coronavirus, and COVID-19 is not seen as a major threat to their health.
A bigger danger to the children is the danger of premature birth due to the virus. A study by SENEO shows that the rate of early births is 15.7% amongst pregnant women with coronavirus compared to the usual 6.5%