Third to Die From Covid-19 Had ‘Badly Damaged’ Lungs, Ministry Says

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The entrance for Covid-19 testing at Phnom Penh’s Khmer-Soviet Friendship Hospital, during its off-hours on February 28, 2021. (Danielle Keeton-Olsen/VOD)

The Health Ministry reported Cambodia’s third death from Covid-19 late Friday, a 46-year-old Cambodian man who died in the capital’s Khmer-Soviet Friendship Hospital.

The man died of Covid-19 on Friday afternoon “as the virus spread very fast and damaged both of his lungs,” the ministry said in a statement.

“The screening shows that both his lungs were badly damaged and the doctors tried to supply him with oxygen on March 12,” it said. “Today, they put a tube into his trachea for more oxygen but he passed away at 3:30 p.m.”

It was the second Covid-19 death reported on Friday, amid a nearly monthlong outbreak that had seen three previous Covid-19 patients die in quarantine facilities or hospitals, with the ministry reporting two as non-Covid-19 causes of death.

The ministry and World Health Organization also warned of potential lockdowns and overwhelmed health facilities if the country’s residents do not take Covid-19 health precautions seriously and help prevent large-scale transmission.

In a joint statement, the ministry and WHO said the recent Covid-19 outbreaks were “most likely” caused by the B.1.1.7 variant, “which transmits more quickly than previously circulating virus.”

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