First COVID-19 Death in Onondaga County

The Onondaga County Health Department has received notification of a confirmed COVID-19 death, the first in Onondaga County. “I am deeply saddened for the family of this individual who are experiencing this loss. This sad news proves how important it is to take measures to protect ourselves, our families, and our community,” said Dr. Indu Gupta, Onondaga County Commissioner of Health. “This individual was an elderly hospitalized patient, so there are no risks of exposure to the general public. For reasons of medical privacy, the Department will not be releasing additional information,” said Gupta.

Prevent the Spread of COVID-19
The public needs to step up and protect not just themselves, but others in our community who are most vulnerable to getting severely ill. Simple steps everyone can take to help stop the spread of COVID-19 and help “flatten the curve” include:

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially before eating.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Stay home, especially when you are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.

Everyone should be monitoring themselves for symptoms of COVID-19 such as fever, cough, and/or difficulty breathing. If symptoms do develop, stay home and call your doctor for further guidance about testing. If you are elderly, have underlying medical conditions, or are immunocompromised, call your doctor early even if your illness is mild. In an emergency call 911. If you have symptoms and do not have a doctor, call Upstate University Hospital’s Triage Line at 315.464.3979 and you will be advised about testing.

Stay informed about COVID-19
Be aware of false information circulating on the internet. Accurate and up-to-date information is available from:

A representative from the Health Department will be available at today’s 3:00 press briefing to answer specific questions related to this announcement.