Blood sample tube positive with COVID-19 or novel coronavirus 2019 found in Wuhan, China

Five people who tested positive for coronavirus have died on Long Island, including four local residents and one patient from New York City who was being treated at a hospital on LI, officials said Tuesday.

Nassau County reported Tuesday that its first resident to die of COVID-19 was a 96-year-old man who was being treated at Mercy Medical Center in Rockville Centre. An 83-year-old man from Queens who tested positive for COVID-19 died Tuesday at Mount Sinai South Nassau hospital in Oceanside. And a third coronavirus patient died in Suffolk County, which reported Monday the first two COVID-19 deaths on Long Island.

“Our prayers and our thoughts go out to the loved ones of those who died,” Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone told reporters in a conference call while working from home after a members of his administration was diagnosed. 

The most recent Suffolk resident to die of COVID-19 was a woman in her 90s with underlying medical issues who was in isolation at Huntington Hospital. The first was man in his 80s who was one of the first cases in the county and had been hospitalized in isolation at St. Catherine’s Hospital in Smithtown. The second was a man in 90s who was in isolation at Huntington Hospital.

As of Tuesday afternoon, Suffolk had 97 cases, Nassau officials reported 131 and there were 1,374 cases statewide, including 12 deaths. There were more than 5,000 cases nationwide and nearly 100 deaths. Suffolk officials conceded that it’s possible that more people have died of coronavirus in the county than the numbers reflect because the testing capacity has lagged behind.

Bellone noted that all of the cases the county is seeing now result from community transmission and the number of cases is going to continue to rise, especially now that testing capacity is expected to increase this week. Suffolk is expected to open a drive-through testing site by the end of the week.

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Related Story: All Long Island Schools Closed for 2 Weeks

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Timothy Bolger is the Editor in Chief of the Long Island Press who’s been working to uncover unreported stories since shortly after it launched in 2003. When he’s not editing, getting hassled by The Man or fielding cold calls to the newsroom, he covers crime, general interest and political news in addition to reporting longer, sometimes investigative features. He won’t be happy until everyone is as pissed off as he is about how screwed up Lawn Guyland is.