Nevada health officials on Monday announced the state’s first death related to the novel coronavirus or COVID-19.
The Southern Nevada Health District in a statement said the man was a Clark County resident in his 60s. He was hospitalized prior to his death and had “underlying medical conditions,” officials said. The man was one of the 35 cases reported in the county to date.
“This loss of life is a tragedy, and we want to express our condolences to the family,” said Dr. Fermin Leguen, acting chief health officer of the Southern Nevada Health District, in a statement. “We must continue to emphasize how important it is to protect those who are most vulnerable to the impacts of the virus and urge our community to support the public health measures and recommendations that are in place.”
Nevada Gov. Steve Sisolak also responded to the news of the death, saying he was “absolutely heartbroken to learn of our State’s first death related to COVID-19, a day that we knew would happen, but it doesn’t make that reality any less painful or difficult to face.”
“I also want to reiterate that our health care workers and facilities are running on all cylinders to make sure that our patients are receiving the very best care. That is why we are encouraging all Nevadans to take proactive, precautionary measures against this virus. Please practice social distancing, avoid people who are sick, wash your hands often, and seek medical care if you do become ill,” he continued. “We are all in this together, and we will do everything we can as Nevadans to protect ourselves and to protect each other.”
The news comes after South Carolina and Kentucky also reported their first coronavirus deaths this week.
The governor of South Carolina confirmed the state’s first coronavirus-related fatality on Monday, with the department of health describing the victim to be an elderly resident at a skilled nursing facility. Meanwhile, Kentucky also confirmed its first coronavirus-related fatality on Monday in an individual who had tested positive for the virus and was being treated for “multiple medical conditions.”
As of Tuesday morning, the novel coronavirus has infected more than 183,425 people across 145 countries and territories, resulting in over 7,100 deaths. In the U.S., at least 49 states plus the District of Columbia have reported confirmed cases of COVID-19, tallying over 4,660 illnesses and 85 deaths.
Fox News' Alexandria Hein contributed to this report.