STARKE COUNTY—The Starke County Health Department issued a press release today, confirming that a third local resident who tested positive for the novel coronavirus is now deceased. 

The adult female from Starke County reportedly passed away at LaPorte Hospital on Monday, May 18. The woman, who was over 60-years-old and had pre-existing conditions, had been hospitalized and tested positive for COVID-19. 

No further information about the patient will be released due to privacy laws. 

The other two coronavirus-related fatalities in Starke County were reported by the SC Health Department on Monday, April 13 and Friday, May 1, respectively. 

According to the most recent data from the Indiana State Department of Health, more than 390 tests have been conducted in Starke County. 

A total of 28 Starke County residents have tested positive for COVID-19 since the first presumptive case was reported on Monday, March 23. 

The remainder of the residents who tested positive for the novel coronavirus have either recovered or are actively isolating for the recommended amount of time.

Each time the Starke County Health Department issues a press release related to COVID-19, Public Health Nurse Frank Lynch includes important information about how the virus is spread and how people can protect themselves. 

Human coronaviruses most commonly spread from an infected person to others through:

  • Respiratory droplets released into the air by coughing and sneezing;

  • Close personal contact, such as touching or shaking hands;

  • Touching an object or surface with the virus on it, then touching your mouth, nose, or eyes before washing your hands; and

  • Rarely, fecal contamination.

Many people who acquire COVID-19 will have mild symptoms, can self-isolate and do not need to be tested. Older individuals and those with underlying medical conditions are at higher risk for severe illness.

The best ways to protect yourself are to wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, avoid touching your face with unwashed hands, avoid close contact with people who are sick, stay home when you’re sick, cover your cough or sneeze and clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.

The Indiana State Department of Health (ISDH) will provide updates as new information becomes available. Visit the ISDH website for the most up-to-date information on COVID-19 in Indiana.

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