US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) has ordered medical checks on every child in its custody after an eight-year-old boy from Guatemala died, marking the second death of a child in the agency's care this month.
The death came during an ongoing dispute over border security and with a partial government shutdown under way over President Donald Trump's request for border wall funding.
The boy, identified by Guatemalan authorities as Felipe Gomez Alonzo, had been in CBP's custody with his father, Agustin Gomez, since December 18.
CBP said in a statement late Tuesday that an agent first noticed the boy had a cough and "glossy eyes" at about 9am Monday.
He was eventually hospitalised twice and died just before midnight, the agency said.
CBP said in the statement that it needs the help of other government agencies to provide healthcare.
The agency "is considering options for surge medical assistance" from the Coast Guard and may request help from the US Department of Health and Human Services, the Department of Defense, and the Federal Emergency Management Agency.
A CBP spokesman could not immediately answer how many children are currently in the agency's custody.
But with border crossings surging, CBP processes thousands of children - both alone and with their parents - every month