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Health officer calls first Santa Clara County COVID-19 death ‘tragic development’


The first coronavirus-related death in Santa Clara County was confirmed Monday, county public health officials said.

The victim, a woman in her 60s with chronic health conditions, had been hospitalized for several weeks and died at El Camino Hospital.

The county’s Public Health Department confirmed the woman’s contraction of the virus Feb. 28. She was the county’s third confirmed case overall and the first without a known history of international travel or contact with an infected person.

Santa Clara County Health Officer Dr. Sara Cody said:

“This is a tragic development.”

Cody added:

“The Public Health Department is taking necessary, carefully considered steps to slow down the spread of the disease and protect those at greatest risk.”

Public health officials have now confirmed 37 cases of coronavirus in Santa Clara County as of March 8, many of whom are now hospitalized or in self-quarantine. The county’s first confirmed case, a man who traveled to Shanghai and Wuhan, China, in January, fully recovered and was released from home isolation Feb. 20.

Coronavirus public health and safety information for Santa Clara County residents can be found at

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