The deceased was a woman in her late 70s. According to a statement, “This person’s positive status was not known until after the death.”
There was no documentation of her recently traveling, but according to the county, she did have other health issues that may have delayed recognition of COVID-19. Medics who responded to a 9-1-1 call wore protective equipment. According to Allegheny County officials, the woman was declared deceased at the scene, but she was tested for coronavirus because of the symptoms that were reported.
The county health department has begun contact-tracing based on information from the family of the deceased. Those family members have also been placed into self-isolation.
“We extend our deepest sympathies to the family and friends of this individual on their loss,” reads a statement from the health department.
Allegheny County has now experienced two deaths from COVID-19, and as of today there have been 58 positive cases of coronavirus in the county. Of those 58 cases, six people have been hospitalized. Yesterday, Gov. Tom Wolf issued a stay-at-home order for Allegheny County. The order went into effect at 8 p.m on March 23 and is set to last two weeks.
Wolf said people in Allegheny County should only leave their homes for life-sustaining reasons, and specifically mentioned buying food, groceries, and pharmaceuticals. Exceptions to the rule are narrow, though outdoor recreation is allowed, as long as people keep at least six feet away from others.
“Don’t leave your home unless someone’s life depends on your leaving,” said Wolf. “Because ultimately someone's life does depend on you staying.”
Allegheny County officials say that additional information about the death will be released in a timely manner following protocols. Officials ask that the public and the media be respectful to the family during this difficult time.