SF announces first death from coronavirus

City officials say man in his 40s suffered from multiple underlying health conditions

A man in his 40s was the first San Francisco resident to die from the coronavirus, city officials announced late Tuesday.

The man had multiple, significant underlying health conditions, city officials said.

“It is a sad day, and we need to pull together as a city to do everything in our power to reduce the likelihood of additional deaths in our community,” Mayor London Breed said in a statement.

Breed reminded people to remain indoors and shelter in place and practice social distancing when outside on essential trips like to the grocery store. San Francisco was the first major city in the U.S. to announce a shelter-in-place order. The March 16 order was followed by a similar one for the entire state of California announced by Gov. Gavin Newsom on March 19.

“Each of us has the power to save lives and decrease the impact of coronavirus in San Francisco,” Breed said. “We need everyone to stay home, which will help protect themselves, their families, and the people in our community who are most at risk of harm from the virus.”

There are about 2,500 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in California, including 152 confirmed cases in San Francisco, city officials said.

There were 40 confirmed deaths from the coronavirus in California as of Tuesday morning.

San Francisco diagnosed its first two cases of COVID-19 on March 5.

“Nearly three weeks after reporting our first confirmed case of COVID-19, we are saddened to report the first death of a person with this illness in San Francisco,” said Dr. Grant Colfax, director of the Department of Public Health. “From the beginning of this outbreak, we have focused on protecting vulnerable populations—including people with chronic health conditions—because we know they are at greater risk of getting very sick and even dying from COVID-19.”

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