1st MIS-C child death reported in Virginia; health condition is associated with COVID-19

The Virginia Department of Health has confirmed a death from Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome in Children (MIS-C) – a health condition that is associated with COVID-19.

Health officials say this is the first MIS-C child death reported in the state. The child was between 10 and 19-years-old and lived in the Prince William Health District.

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No other patient information is expected to be released, officials say.

The first reports of MIS-C came from the United Kingdom in late April 2020, Virginia health officials said. U.S. cases were first reported in New York in May 2020. Virginia has reported 111 cases to date.

"We are devastated by this sad news, and our hearts go out to the family and friends of this child," said Virginia Health Commissioner M. Norman Oliver in a statement. "COVID-19 continues to cause illness, hospitalizations and deaths across Virginia and the U.S. As we enter a time of year when families are traveling and gathering for holidays, we urge all Virginians to take steps to protect themselves and their families. Please get vaccinated if you are eligible. Practice social distancing, frequent hand washing, and wearing face coverings, as appropriate. COVID-19 vaccinations are free and available to anyone age 5 and older at multiple locations across the Commonwealth."

Oliver said MIS-C may cause problems with a child’s heart, lungs, kidneys and other organs. Most children with MIS-C have ongoing fever, plus more than one of the following: stomach pain, diarrhea, vomiting, skin rash, bloodshot eyes, and dizziness or lightheadedness.

Parents are urged to seek medical care right away if a child is showing any severe MIS-C warning signs such as trouble breathing, pain or pressure in the chest that does not go away; confusion or unusual behavior; severe abdominal pain; inability to wake or stay awake; or pale, gray or blue-colored skin, lips or nail beds, depending on skin tone.

More information on MIS-C can be found online at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website.