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First pregnant woman and first jail inmate die from coronavirus, L.A. County officials say

L.A. County Public Health Director Barbara Ferrer, pictured in April, announced the death of an incarcerated individual and the death of a pregnant woman Monday.
L.A. County Public Health Director Barbara Ferrer, pictured in April, announced the death of an incarcerated individual and the death of a pregnant woman Monday.
(Irfan Khan / Los Angeles Times)

Los Angeles County officials Monday reported an additional 22 coronavirus-linked deaths, including a pregnant woman who had tested positive for the virus and had underlying health issues and a person who was incarcerated in a jail facility.

Both deaths are the first of their kind in the county related to COVID-19, health officials said.

At least 228 pregnant women in L.A. County have tested positive for the virus and 79% of them were symptomatic. The woman who died had significant underlying health issues, Public Health Director Barbara Ferrer said.

There have been 52 births and four stillbirths among the women who have contracted the virus. To date, 40 infants who have been checked for the virus have tested negative.

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There have been 843 confirmed cases of the virus in the county’s jail facilities, Ferrer said. Of those, 622 cases have been among people who were incarcerated.

The jail inmate whose death was announced Monday received care at a hospital where they died, Ferrer said.

“To the loved ones of the persons who passed away, we offer our condolences.”

Correctional health officials plan to finish testing all inmates in county jails by next week.

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Officials Monday also reported the death of a prison guard who had contracted the virus. The California state prison correctional officer died Saturday after testing positive for the coronavirus.

Although the Riverside County coroner will need to determine the precise cause of death for Danny Mendoza, 53, he could be the first staff member of the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation to fall victim to COVID-19.


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