Officials confirmed the first coronavirus related death in Dutchess County.

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On Sunday, the Dutchess County Department of Behavioral & Community Health confirmed the first death relating to COVID-19 in Dutchess County.

“We have lost a neighbor and extend our sincerest thoughts and prayers to his family and friends. We are grateful to the compassionate healthcare professional on the front line today caring for patients across our community. This is a stark reminder of the challenge and toll we all face as come together to respond to this emergency," Dutchess County Executive Marc Molinaro said.

Officials confirmed the person was a 69-year-old male who developed respiratory distress and went directly to Mid-Hudson Regional Hospital where he was treated but he died on Friday.

The man was not screened or monitored by the Dutchess County Department of Behavioral & Community Health prior to hospitalization, officials say. More details about the man haven't been released, for privacy reasons.

“We offer our deepest condolences to the family," Behavioral and Community Health Commissioner Dr. Anil Vaidian said. "We have been in touch with the family for necessary screening as well as support during this very difficult time. Our entire team continues to work aggressively to fight this battle against COVID-19 and we implore every individual to do their part in the fight by staying home and helping to stop the spread.”

There are currently over 60 positive cases of COVID-19 in Dutchess County, according to the health department. Officials believe the positive cases will increase as more testing becomes available this week.

Staying home is critical to stop the spread of COVID-19 to flatten the curve, officials say.