BELIZE CITY, Wed. Sept. 23, 2020– As of Wednesday, September 23, 2020, the number of deaths resulting from the COVID-19 virus is now 22, with the most recent death being that of a man in his mid-thirties, Elias Yacab. Last Friday, the Department of Health Services reported that they were investigating the sudden passing of two Belizean women, one from Belize City and the other from Orange Walk, whose deaths were suspected to be COVID-19-related.
One of these two women who lost their lives as a result of the virus is Carla Bennett, a 59-year-old employee of the Elections and Boundaries Department who resided in the Belama area of Belize City.
The Director of Health Services (DHS) reported that Yacab, 38, died while in the Intensive Care Unit at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital (KHMH). Yacab, a resident of the Cayo District, had been hospitalized for 2 weeks. Reports are that on Tuesday night, Yacab passed away after fighting for his life for about twenty-three days.
He was an employee of Prosser Fertilizer and a resident of San Jose, Succotz Village. Local media reported that according to Yacab’s brother, a total of 17 members of his family are also infected with COVID-19 at this time.
During an interview with the media, Dr. Manazero also mentioned that Carla Bennett was experiencing symptoms from earlier in the week, which she believed to have been asthma. Manzanero also mentioned that despite being advised to wear a mask, during the last few days before her passing, Ms. Bennett complained that it was complicating her breathing even further. She was discovered dead at her home on Gwen Lizarraga Street
Bennett’s sudden passing led to the temporary shutdown and sanitization of the Elections and Boundaries Offices on Lumberyard Crescent and at the Charles Bartlett Hyde building.
At the time of the closing, it was discovered that another unnamed employee had lost his/her sense of taste and smell.
Last Friday, the Director of Health Services, Dr. Marvin Manzanero, spoke to the media regarding the passing of an elderly woman in the Orange Walk District from respiratory complications.
The patient, who was in her eighties, apparently died at home and, although she had displayed symptoms of the illness, she was not tested for the COVID-19 virus until after she had passed. According to Dr. Manzanero, the patient was offered a test after she began experiencing respiratory symptoms, but her family refused the offer until after her death.
The death of the elderly woman would later be ruled to be the 21st COVID-19 fatality on Monday, September 21, 2020.