PORTSMOUTH, Va. (WAVY) — Portsmouth Health Department officials say a woman in her 60s is the first person in the city to die from the novel coronavirus.

Health officials said the resident had underlying health conditions.

“The Portsmouth Health Department is saddened to announce their first COVID 19 related death. We send our deepest condolences to the family and friends. The Health Department is working diligently during this pandemic and we urge our community to continue to follow guidance from our Governor and Department of Health to keep our citizens as safe as possible,” said Portsmouth Health Director Dr. Lauren James.

So far, Virginia Health Department officials say cases increased by 222 from Wednesday (1,484) to Thursday (1,708), and are expected to continue to rise.

Gov. Ralph Northam said Wednesday that Virginians should expect the peak of cases around late April to late May.

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