Union Co. reports first coronavirus-related death: Man in his 70s connected to nursing home

Union Co. reports first coronavirus-related death: Man in his 70s connected to nursing home
A man in his 70s is the first to die in Union County of a coronavirus-related illness (Source: STOCK PHOTO)

UNION COUNTY, N.C. (WBTV) - Union County health officials confirmed the county’s first coronavirus-related death Thursday morning.

The man who died is in his 70’s and had been hospitalized, county officials say. The man also had other health complications.

Prior to being admitted at the hospital, the man was connected to a long-term care facility, county officials say. Public Health is working closely with the facility to provide recommendations consistent with CDC guidance.

“Our thoughts and prayers are with the patient’s family and friends,” said Dennis Joyner, Director of Public Health. “I know this is a hard realization for our community. I want to assure our residents that Union County Public Health is working tirelessly to help individuals who have tested positive receive necessary care and carry out guidance by the CDC and NC DHHS to limit exposure to others.”

Union County had 91 positive COVID-19 cases as of Thursday morning, according to county leaders.

North Carolina has 3,426 coronavirus cases with 53 deaths, according to the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services.

Union County’s first confirmed case of COVID-19 was identified on March 18, health officials say.

“Residents are urged to follow Governor Roy Cooper’s Stay at Home Order and only leave home for essential activities," Union County officials say. "If residents must leave home, they are encouraged to keep six feet distance from others and wear a cloth face covering in public places where social distancing is difficult to maintain.”

For the duration of the coronavirus pandemic, Union County has updated its COVID-19 webpage with important information and resources.

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