Gov. Inslee declares state of emergency as officials confirm two new ‘presumptive’ coronavirus cases in the state


The Washington Department of Health confirmed two new coronavirus cases in the state at a press conference on Saturday.

Of those cases, two came from a long-term care facility in Kirkland. The department said one of the patients is an employee in her 40s and the other is a 70-year-old resident.

This makes a total of six cases in Washington state, five of which are “presumptive,” meaning they tested positive with the Washington Department of Health and are now on their way to the CDC.

As concern over the coronavirus continues to grow, Washington Gov. Jay Inslee declared a state of emergency on Saturday.

In a release, Inslee said he is directing state agencies to use all resources necessary to prepare for an outbreak.

“This will allow us to get the resources we need,” Inslee said. “This is a time to take common-sense, proactive measures to ensure the health and safety of those who live in Washington state.”

Public Health officials announced the country’s first death from the virus on Saturday, saying it was someone from King County.

On Friday, the Washington Department of Health said one of two cases in Washington state is in a high school student in Snohomish County. Health officials said the other case was found in a 50-year-old King County woman.

In a press conference Saturday, President Trump said the person who died was a Washington woman in her late 50s. The Washington Department of Health later clarified the person who died was, in fact, a man.

Earlier in the week, the Department of Health said the Public Health Lab in Shoreline can now test for coronavirus cases.

“This means our state can respond quickly and effectively,” Inslee said. “Our priority now is to slow the spread of this virus.”