Lillian Boyd, Dana Point Times

The Orange County Health Care Agency confirmed Tuesday, March 24, the first death of an Orange County resident in connection to the novel coronavirus, COVID-19.

A press release issued just before 4 p.m. stated the individual was a male in his 70s with underlying health conditions who had been receiving treatment at a local hospital. It was not disclosed which city the individual resided in.

“Additional details about the individual’s death, the name of the hospital, and the city of residence, will not be disclosed,” the release said.

Nichole Quick, the county health officer, said county officials extend their heartfelt sympathies to the patient’s family and friends.

“This serves as a very unfortunate reminder to the community about the importance of staying at home and social distancing when leaving the household for essential activities, or to work at an essential business, in order to slow the spread of COVID-19 and help protect our most vulnerable neighbors,” Quick said.

There is now epidemiological evidence of community transmission in Orange County, indicating that COVID-19 is spreading in the community, according to the county. People age 65 or older are advised to stay at home.

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