4 additional COVID-19 deaths reported in Virginia, raising total to 13

COVID-19 cases in Virginia increase by 100, nears 400 cases statewide
Posted at 12:09 PM, Mar 25, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-26 06:21:33-04

RICHMOND, Va. – State officials confirmed Wednesday that there are now 12 COVID-19 deaths in Virginia after three deaths were reported Wednesday morning. Two of the deaths were in the Peninsula region while one was in the Pittsylvania area.

Less than an hour later, CBS 6 confirmed the death of a third patient at Canterbury Rehabilitation and Healthcare Center in Henrico, bringing Virginia's death toll to 13.

The death comes one day after Henrico health officials reported 2 elderly patients, who were residents of the Canterbury facility, died from COVID-19. The cases were the first deaths in Central Virginia.

In one day, COVID-19 cases in Virginia jumped by more than 100, bringing the statewide total to nearly 400 cases.

The Virginia Department of Health said Wednesday that 391 people have tested positive for COVID-19, up 101 cases from Tuesday. Health officials also announced 59 people remain hospitalized with the illness in the Commonwealth, up 14 from Monday.

State officials say those numbers will continue to rise as more and more people are tested.

In a press conference on Tuesday, Gov. Ralph Northam said that COVID-19 cases and deaths in Virginia are going to keep going up, and that "we have come nowhere close to hitting the peak of the curve."

"We have taken aggressive steps to keep Virginians safe and, and I wouldn't say so much as the numbers tell us that it's working... but science and experience, dealing with infections, dealing with pandemics tell us that these are the things that we need to do and If we comply with them, they will work," Northam said when asked if social-distancing measures had positively affected Virginia's COVID-19 rates.

"But if we continue to do what we're recommending, we will hopefully flatten that curve as much as we can," Northam said. "And again, that's to protect the capacity of our healthcare industry to make sure that if and when Virginians come in, and they need hospitalization, that we have the beds available, especially ICU beds, that we have the staff available, and that we have the equipment that we need."

Northam said that according to data from other countries, Virginians should expect several months until the pandemic begins to resolve in the Commonwealth.

Stay with CBS 6 for the latest on this developing story.

COVID-19 Safety Precautions

Most patients with COVID-19 have mild to moderate symptoms. However, in a small proportion of patients, COVID-19 can lead to more severe illness, including death, particularly among those who are older or those who have chronic medical conditions.

COVID-19 spreads primarily through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes.

Symptoms include fever, cough, and difficulty breathing. Symptoms appear within 14 days of being exposed to an infectious person.

Virginia health officials urged the following precautions:

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer only if soap and water are not available.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands) when coughing or sneezing.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Avoid non-essential travel.
  • Avoid contact with sick people.
  • Practice social distancing. Maintain at least six feet of space between yourself and other individuals when out in public.
  • Avoid crowds of more than ten people.