The Mobile County Health Department has confirmed the death of a second patient who previously tested positive for COVID-19.
In a statement Wednesday, MCHD officials said the patient, a 74-year-old male with a history of underlying medical conditions, had presented to a hospital with known COVID-19 symptoms and was hospitalized. Eventually, he succumbed to the illness, though the exact date is unclear.
“We are sad to report our second death in Mobile County,” Health Officer Bernard Eichold said. “The MCHD team is conducting case contact disease surveillance of individuals who have tested positive for COVID-19. Everyone should take this (illness) very seriously and keep persons infected in their thoughts and prayers.”
In addition to news of the second death, Eichold also encouraged merchants in Mobile County to limit the number of customers in their establishments and have markings in check-out areas outlining the 6-foot spacing recommended by state and federal social distancing guidelines.
Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey ordered “non-essential” businesses closed last week, leaving mostly grocery stores, pharmacies and gun shops open to the public. In Mobile, Mayor Sandy Stimpson has taken further action requiring the stores that are still open to adhere to social distancing recommendations and enforce them among their customers locally. Those new citywide requirements will go into effect at 7 a.m., on Thursday, April 2.
According to MCHD, most patients with COVID-19 infection have mild respiratory illness along with fever, cough and shortness of breath. Some have more severe symptoms that require hospitalization. Health officials urge anyone experiencing symptoms to first notify their healthcare provider so that proper precautions can be taken.
MCHD and the Alabama Department of Public Health are encouraging the general public to follow all statewide health orders including those prohibiting gatherings of 10 or more persons or any gathering where attendees cannot maintain a social distance of at least 6 feet.
In addition, MCHD and ADPH encourage everyone to:
• Stay home when you are sick.
• Avoid contact with sick people.
• Cover your mouth and nose when coughing or sneezing.
• Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds; or hand sanitizer.
• Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.
• Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces in your homes.
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