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1st coronavirus-related death reported in Arizona

Posted at 7:24 PM, Mar 20, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-20 23:18:16-04

TUCSON, Ariz. — State health officials reported Friday evening the first coronavirus-related death in Arizona.

According to a news release, the patient was a man in his 50s in Maricopa County who had underlying health conditions. The Arizona Department of Health Services (AZDHS) is notifying anyone who may have had close contact with him, and monitoring their symptoms.

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There are 63 reported cases of the coronavirus known as COVID-19 in Arizona, according to the latest numbers from AZDHS. Eight of those are in Pima County, one in Santa Cruz County, one in Cochise County, and the majority are in Maricopa County, with 34 cases.

"We expect to see more cases of COVID-19 in Arizona, and there could be more deaths," AZDHS Director Dr. Cara Christ said in a news release. "It is imperative that everyone takes precautions to protect you and your family from this disease.”

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According to AZDHS, these are best ways to prevent the spread of COVID-19:

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then immediately throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.