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The original item was published from 3/25/2020 11:23:46 AM to 4/26/2020 12:00:00 AM.

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Posted on: March 25, 2020

[ARCHIVED] Health Department confirms first COVID-19-related death in Orange County

Orange County Seal

Goshen, N.Y. – The Orange County Health Department on Wednesday reported the first death in Orange County as a result of COVID-19.

The deceased, who passed away early Wednesday morning, was an Orange County resident over the age of 80, with multiple pre-existing medical conditions.

“We are saddened to learn that Orange County has its first death resulting from this crisis,” Orange County Executive Steven M. Neuhaus said. “Our thoughts and prayers go out to the family of the victim. We continue to urge the community to practice vigilance, social distancing and public health hygiene in an effort to slow down the spread of the coronavirus.”

Orange County Health Commissioner Dr. Irina Gelman noted that COVID-19 has spread quickly throughout Orange County and she recommended that all residents stay home, including children and teenagers not in school, unless they must get food, medical supplies, or must go to work. Try to use delivery services when possible. Keep your distance from other people as much as possible, following the recommendation of six feet.

Gelman advised residents to consider any public site in Orange County as a potential site of COVID-19 exposure. Any events and gatherings of people still scheduled to take place in the coming weeks must be canceled or face fines imposed by County ordinances. If you become mildly ill, stay home and manage your symptoms. For residents who have severe symptoms indicative of COVID-19, contact your medical provider to discuss a plan of care. The Health Department is advising people with mild illness to stay home and not get tested. Do not dial 9-1-1 unless you have an immediate medical emergency.

According to Gelman, the best way to prevent the spread of COVID-19, continues to be to practice basic, common-sense personal hygiene. This includes washing your hands frequently and thoroughly, refraining from touching your face and avoiding unnecessary contact with others.

Should you feel ill, contact your healthcare provider first. Do not go directly to the doctor’s office, an emergency room or other healthcare facilities. These simple steps will help prevent the spread of the virus and protect you and your loved ones.

If you are an Orange County resident and have recently traveled outside the County and have questions regarding COVID-19, please contact the Orange County Department of Health at 845-291-2330. Due to the high volume of calls, we encourage residents who have basic questions to visit the Orange County Health Department’s webpage at

In addition, for general questions, residents may also contact the New York State Department of Health (NYSDOH) 2019 Novel Coronavirus hotline at 1-888-364-3065 to speak with a NYSDOH expert who will answer questions. This is open 24 hours a day.

For more information, contact Justin Rodriguez, Assistant to the County Executive for Communications and Media Relations at 845.291.3255 or


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