First Hoosier succumbs to coronavirus as state works to slow spread


INDIANAPOLIS (WANE) — The coronavirus has claimed its first Indiana life, the state announced Monday.

Gov. Eric Holcomb and Indiana State Department of Health officials said Monday that a Marion County man over the age of 60 succumbed to COVID-19 at a Community Health Network hospital on Monday morning. The patient had been hospitalized as a COVID-19 patient but had suffered from underlying medical conditions, officials said.

The patient was not named, and no other information was expected to be released.

“A family today is suffering the ultimate loss due to COVID-19, and this sadly underscores how severe the virus can be – especially for some high-risk Hoosiers,” said Holcomb. “The state is taking unprecedented actions to slow the spread of COVID-19, and every Hoosier should follow the precautionary measures.”

Indiana Health Commissioner Dr. Kris Box said the death underlines the need for the community to take care in the midst of the outbreak. Earlier Monday, Holcomb issued a variety of precautionary orders, including forcing all Indiana restaurants and bars to close to dine-in customers.

“I cannot stress this enough – if you are ill, stay home,” said Box. “If you need to seek medical care, call ahead so that your healthcare provider can take steps to protect others from exposure to COVID-19. We all have a role to play to protect Hoosiers from this illness, and the time to act is now.”

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