A 69-year-old man this week became the first doctor in Sonora to die after contracting Covid-19, passing away seven days after his wife succumbed to the same disease.
Salvador Ramos Olmos, a doctor in the city of Caborca, died in the IMSS 14 General Hospital in the state capital Hermosillo early on Tuesday morning. His wife, 68-year-old Liliana Magdalena Soto, died in the same hospital on April 21.
The couple’s daughter, a pediatrician who also tested positive for the coronavirus but didn’t develop serious symptoms, told the newspaper El Sol de Hermosillo that her father is believed to have been infected with Covid-19 during a consultation with a patient from the small border town of Sásabe.
Suzel Ramos Soto said her father had continued to attend to his patients despite the risk of being infected and his age because he was dedicated to his job. Ramos will be remembered as a devoted doctor who served the community of Caborca for more than 40 years.
After developing coronavirus symptoms, the doctor was admitted to the private hospital where he worked on April 8 but transferred to Hermosillo the next day after his Covid-19 diagnosis was confirmed by test results.
Before he was hospitalized in Caborca, Ramos is believed to have transmitted Covid-19 to his wife. She first developed symptoms on April 11, tested positive for the disease on April 13 and was transferred to the IMSS hospital in Hermosillo on the 15th.
Ramos’ family didn’t tell him that his wife was also sick but after she arrived in the same ward in Hermosillo he quickly became aware of her illness.
“When they admitted my mom to hospital my dad heard her,” said Suzel Ramos, adding that her father’s condition deteriorated after he found out that his wife was also sick.
However, it was Soto who succumbed first to Covid-19, dying six days after she was hospitalized. She suffered from Sjögren’s syndrome, an autoimmune disease that made her more vulnerable to the coronavirus.
Ramos, who was asthmatic, died a week later. Both he and his wife had been placed on ventilators before their deaths, their critical conditions making it impossible for them to say goodbye to each despite their close physical proximity.
“If anything is true, it’s that coronavirus patients die alone,” said the couple’s daughter.
Federal health authorities said this week that the possibility of surviving Covid-19 after being placed on a ventilator is relatively low, with 60% to 80% of intubated patients having died in Mexico.
Suzel Ramos and her two brothers, Edgar and Carlos, all said that their parents received excellent care in the IMSS hospital in Hermosillo.
Twenty people have now died in Sonora after testing positive to Covid-19. There were 202 confirmed coronavirus cases in the northern border state as of Wednesday, 53 of which were considered active.