Health officials confirm Oregon's first death from coronavirus

Mar 14 2020, 9:11 pm

In a statement released from the Oregon Health Authority tonight, the first reported death in Oregon due to COVID-19 has occurred.

Since first reported months ago, coronavirus has spread across over 100 countries, shutting down Italy, claiming lives all over the globe. In recent days, President Donald Trump declared a national state of emergency.

After banning large gatherings in the state, the Oregon government has shut down all schools grades K-12 for two weeks.

The hardest-hit region of Oregon so far is in Lebanon, where a Veteran’s Home has seen more than a dozen confirmed cases.

Today, it was announced that a 70-year-old man with no connections to the home in Lebanon, nor any confirmed contact with confirmed cases, had succumbed to the virus.

The fatality took place in Multnomah County, at the Portland Veterans’ Affairs Medical Center. Out of respect for their family, and for their privacy during this difficult time, OHA has released no other information at this time.

“While we knew we would arrive at this day at some point, it doesn’t lessen the impact,” said Oregon Health Authority Director Patrick Allen. “Our thoughts and deepest sympathy are with the family of this individual who honorably served his country.”

“This is a sobering reminder that this virus is in our community and can be serious for older people and those with underlying conditions,” said Dr. Jennifer Vines Multnomah County Health Officer. “This loss has motivated us to continue our efforts to minimize the impact of this virus on our community.”

With coronavirus on the rise, Oregon Health Authority is reminding individuals who attend events and gatherings to monitor their health for signs and symptoms of COVID-19. And if you’re not feeling well, they recommend staying home at this time. Also, due to unexpected cancellations, please check the event you plan to attend is still taking place. Keep up with COVID-19 news here.