A patient infected with coronavirus in Washington state has died on Saturday, according to a state health official.
This marks the first death in the U.S. due to COVID-19.
“It is a sad day in our state as we learn that a Washingtonian has died from COVID-19,” Gov. Jay Inslee said in a statement, using the World Health Organization’s name for the disease caused by the coronavirus.
It is a sad day as we learn a Washingtonian has died from COVID-19. Our hearts go out to his family and friends.
We are strengthening our preparedness and response efforts to keep Washingtonians healthy, safe and informed.
— Governor Jay Inslee (@GovInslee) February 29, 2020
“We are strengthening our preparedness and response efforts,” Inslee said. “I am committed to keeping Washingtonians healthy, safe and informed.”
This comes as four other coronavirus cases within the U.S. were reported this week from California, Oregon and Washington state.
The patients identified had no history of travel to a country where the virus is circulating.
President Trump addressed the nation from the White House again Saturday following this development to give updates on travel restrictions and other U.S. preparedness responses, including the possibility of closing the southern border.
There are now more than 85,000 cases worldwide – most of them in China, where the virus originated – and more than 2,900 deaths.
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