Washington health officials report 9th coronavirus death; first North Carolina case confirmed

PROMO Health - 2019 Coronaviruse 2019-nCor China Outbreak Pandemic - iStock - jarun011
Published Wednesday, March 4, 2020
by Dan McCaleb | The Center Square

The state of Washington reported three new deaths from the novel coronavirus Tuesday, bringing the total there to nine.

The state has confirmed 27 cases of the disease, including the nine who have died. No coronavirus deaths have been recorded in the U.S. outside of Washington.

Also on Tuesday, North Carolina reported its first case of case of COVID-19, as its officially known; and New York confirmed its second case.

The North Carolina case is linked to the same Washington nursing home facility where five residents contracted the virus and later died, health officials said.

"I know that people are worried about this virus and I want to assure North Carolinians our state is prepared," Gov. Roy Cooper said in a statement.

More than 120 cases of COVID-19, which originated in China in December, have been confirmed nationwide.

China's total number of cases climbed to 80,151 infections Tuesday and 2,943 deaths.

In an effort to halt last week's plummeting stock market and aid the U.S. economy, the Federal Reserve on Tuesday cut interest rates by half a percent.

Washington Gov. Jay Inslee declared a state of emergency Saturday after the first death was reported. Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis also declared a public health emergency after the state's first two cases were reported.

COVID-19 is caused by a member of the coronavirus family that's a close cousin to the SARS and MERS viruses that have caused outbreaks in the past.

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