San Benito County health officials announced on April 3 that a second local resident has died of COVID-19.

The patient was a woman in her 80s who had several underlying health conditions, according to San Benito County staff. The woman had been isolating at home, but her symptoms worsened and she was taken to Natividad Hospital in Salinas on March 28. She was admitted to the Intensive Care Unit of the hospital.

The woman was among the COVID-19 cases being monitored by San Benito County Public Health Services.

County officials expressed their condolences to the woman’s family and friends.

“While we mourn her loss, we should all remember what a potentially dangerous virus this is,” said San Benito County Health Officer Marty Fenstersheib. “We must all take the opportunity to redouble our efforts to abide by the safety precautions. Please continue to be vigilant about keeping a safe distance from others, washing your hands and staying home if you are sick.”

The first local resident who died with COVID-19 was Ken Machado, who died at his Paicines ranch on March 16, according to his family and friends. 

As of April 6, 369 San Benito County residents have been tested for COVID-19, with 30 of these results coming back positive for the illness. Thirteen cases remain active. Of the total tests, 313 have come back negative and 26 are pending results.

The COVID-19 illness has resulted in a pandemic crisis that has forced the closure of schools, businesses and public gathering places in San Benito County and throughout the state and nation. Local residents are under a “shelter in place” order requiring them to stay home until May 3, except to conduct “essential” activities.

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