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2 Nursing home patients and high school student testing positive for the COVID-19 Coronavirus

- Kirkland, WA

Washington state health officials are investigating possible outbreak of the coronavirus at a long-term nursing facility in Kirkland where two people tested positive for the disease.

Six people have tested positive for the novel coronavirus in the state, including a man whose death was reported Saturday, making him the first coronavirus fatality in the states. The other case comes from a high school boy, and a woman who traveled to South Korea along with an unidentified man. The cases associated with the Life Care Center, a nursing facility in Kirkland, includes a 40-year-old female health care worker who has no known travel outside the U.S. Officials have stated that she is in satisfactory condition at a local hospital. The second case is a woman in her 70s, she has been hospitalized and is in serious condition.

Photo By: Michael Nedelman and Jamie Gumbrecht

More than 50 residents and staff from the Life Care Center in Kirkland are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms, and will be tested for the coronavirus, said Dr. Jeffrey Duchin, health officer for Seattle and King County.

"In addition, we're aware of a number of individuals associated with the long-term care facility who are reportedly ill with respiratory symptoms or pneumonia, and we're in the process of investigating this situation as an outbreak," Duchin said. "We're in the beginning stages of our investigation."

The high school boy in Snohomish County just north of King County became ill with flu-like symptoms last Monday, the student's family said in a statement. He was tested for the flu but the tests came back negative, so he returned to Jackson High School on Friday, the county health district said in a blog post. He stayed on campus about five minutes and went home because the family was notified by health officials that his original sample had been tested for coronavirus and came back presumptive positive, the health district said.

"The family didn't know their son was being tested for COVID-19.... Like most people, they assumed it was the flu. They did all the right things," the health district said.

Inslee declares State of Emergency

Washington Gov. Jay Inslee declared a state of emergency Saturday, directing state agencies to use all resources necessary to respond to the outbreak.

"This will allow us to get the resources we need," Inslee said. "This is a time to take common-sense, proactive measures to ensure the health and safety of those who live in Washington state."

This is a developing story and will be updated when more information becomes available.

By: MLWA 7, Michael Nedelman and Jamie Gumbrecht

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