Americas, Latest on coronavirus outbreak

Venezuela confirms first death from COVID-19

47-year-old man had underlying respiratory problem

Laura Gamba   | 27.03.2020
Venezuela confirms first death from COVID-19 A person wears face mask as a preventive measure against coronavirus (Covid-19) after Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered a “collective quarantine” in seven states in Caracas, Venezuela on March 16, 2020. ( Boris Vergara - Anadolu Agency )

BOGOTA, Colombia 

Venezuela announced its first death from the novel coronavirus Thursday.  

Vice President Delcy Rodriguez confirmed that a 47-year-old worker from Aragua state who had a pre-existing lung disease passed away after contracting the virus. 

"He was admitted to a private clinic for pneumonia in March. Three days ago, the Venezuelan State Epidemiological Network was contacted, and he tested positive," Rodriguez said in a statement from the Miraflores presidential palace in Caracas.   

“We extend our condolences to his family,” she said. 

Rodriguez announced a new case of COVID-19 in Venezuela in the last 24 hours, bringing the number of infected people in the country to 107, and said 31 patients had already recovered, which represents 34% of those infected so far. 

She said more than 14 million people have answered a survey that has allowed the government to detect 42,653 potential people to visit, of whom more than 32,000 have already been examined by health authorities. 

In order to prevent the spread of the pandemic, the government declared a national quarantine for the past 11 days, during which work and school activities have been suspended as well as national and international flights, with the exception of cargo flights. 

The virus has arrived in Venezuela amid a public health crisis compounded by an economic recession, a lack of medical supplies and rising prices of goods and medicines.

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