‘You can only imagine the stress level’: Mother of Illinois’ youngest COVID-19 patient speaks out

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BARTLETT, Ill. — A 3-year-old boy in northwest suburban Bartlett is the youngest person in Illinois to be diagnosed with COVID-19.

The boy’s mother told WGN it all started a month ago with a fever and a cough. The family made three visits to the emergency room, and pleaded multiple times for a coronavirus test. On Wednesday night, the test came back positive.

“You can only imagine the stress level, especially at night,” the boy’s mother Diana told WGN. “Nobody’s sleeping, we were all up monitoring him, monitoring his breathing, monitoring his fever. There were two occasions where the fever got so high, he started shaking.”

The boy attends Independence Center for Early Learning in Bartlett. The preschool is in School District U-46, the second largest school system in the state. Until now Illinois health officials had reported the youngest patient in the state was a 9-year-old.

The boy’s mother Diana, who only wants to be identified by her first name, said her son was born premature, suffered respiratory issues his whole life, and was still denied a COVID-19 test.

She said all the other tests for all other illnesses came back negative, and she has no idea how he contracted the virus. As far as she knows, he is the only case at the preschool.

He remains at AMITA Health St. Alexius Medical Center in Hoffman Estates.

“He’s still not eating, he’s drinking very little and we’re just worried he’s getting rushed out of there too soon, and that he may have a downfall again in the future because he hasn’t been given the opportunity to get healthy at his own pace,” she said.

Diana said she and her husband both have symptoms now and there are no arrangements for them to get tested.

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