Orange County reports its 1st juvenile COVID-19 death

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An Orange County teen has died from the novel coronavirus, becoming the youngest person in the county to succumb to the illness, public health officials said Wednesday.

The teen girl had “significant” underlying health conditions, the Orange County Health Care Agency said in a news release.

“We are deeply saddened by this loss of life and send our condolences to her friends and family during this very difficult time,” Dr. Clayton Chau, the county’s acting health officer, said in a statement.

Officials declined to release additional details about the case, citing patient confidentiality.

The girl’s death comes less than three weeks after California recorded its first COVID-19 death in a child, a Central Valley teenager.

Orange County has confirmed a total of 833 deaths related to the virus, among a total of more than 44,500 infections. More than half of those who succumbed were at least 75 years old.

Only about 7% of the county’s confirmed cases are people under 18, and it’s extremely rare for children to die of the coronavirus.

Statewide, juveniles account for about 10% of California’s nearly 639,000 cases. As of Wednesday, the state had reported 11,301 COVID-19 deaths.

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