Health district: 75 virus cases, fifth person dead in Tri-Cities area


TRI-CITIES, Wash. — A fifth person in the Tri-Cities area has died from the coronavirus as the number of known cases skyrocketed to 75, the Benton-Franklin Health District announced Friday.

As of Friday morning, the total number of confirmed cases in the area is 54 — 42 in Benton County and 12 in Franklin County. There are another 12 probable cases in Benton and nine in Franklin, health officials said.

That’s up from the 37 cases in the Benton and Franklin Counties on Thursday– 26 confirmed and 11 probable.

“Due to the increased numbers of cases and more data flowing into the Health District that needs to be analyzed, we are no longer able to provide specific information about all cases as we did earlier in this outbreak,” the district said in its website.

Of both confirmed and probable cases, there are at least 16 at nursing homes: nine at Bonaventure of Tri-Cities, five at Regency Canyon Lakes, one at Solstice and one at Life Care Richland.

Health officials said 68 cases are believed to be community-spread.

580 people in the area have tested negative — 435 in Benton County and 145 in Franklin County.

The health district website has more updates on the status of coronavirus in the area.