INDIANAPOLIS — Indiana has seen its first death as a result of the novel coronavirus.
Gov. Eric Holcomb announced the news in a Monday press conference, sharing that the individual had been under care in central Indiana’s Community Health Network.
Ram Yeleti, executive vice president and chief physician executive for the Community Health Network, said the man was over 60 years old and did have a preexisting health issue before testing positive for COVID-19.
Yeleti said a nurse stayed with the infected man at the time of his death. His wife, also exposed to the virus, was allowed to communicate with him via an iPad.
“This is not the first patient and this will not be the last,” Yeleti said, urging Hoosiers to stay home and take social distancing directives seriously.
The Indiana State Department of Health reported five new positive cases of the virus on Monday, bringing the state’s total to 24.
Only one case has been confirmed in Northwest Indiana, as of Monday afternoon, belonging to a 55-year-old LaPorte County man who is seeking care at Porter Regional Hospital. The ISDH is reporting 139 tests of Hoosiers have been performed by the state health department and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Thirteen total counties are reporting positive COVID-19 cases: Adams, Bartholomew, Boone, Floyd, Hamilton, Hendricks, Howard, Johnson, LaPorte, Marion, Noble, St. Joseph and Wells counties. Marion County has reported the highest number of cases with seven.