SEATTLE – Health officials in Washington state said Sunday night that a second person had died from the coronavirus and researchers said it may have been circulating for weeks undetected in the greater Seattle area.
In a statement, Public Health - Seattle & King County said man in his 70s died at a nursing facility near Seattle on Saturday. On Friday, health officials said a man in his 50s died of coronavirus.
Both had underlying health conditions and both were being treated at Evergreen Health in Kirkland, Washington, east of Seattle.
These two deaths are the first in the United States from COVID-19.
Washington state now has 12 confirmed cases, including three new elderly patients at EvergreenHealth who are said to be in critical condition and have underlying health conditions.
Health officials offered these tips on preventing the spread of the virus:
- Do not go to the emergency room unless essential. Emergency rooms need to be able to serve those with the most critical needs. If you have symptoms like cough, fever, or other respiratory problems, contact your regular doctor first.
- Stay home when sick
- Practice excellent personal hygiene habits, including handwashing, coughing into tissue or elbow, avoid touching eyes, nose, or mouth.
- Stay away from people who are ill, especially if you are 60 and older or have underlying health conditions such as diabetes, heart disease, lung disease, or a weakened immune system.
- Stay informed. Information is changing frequently.