OTTAWA—The Franklin County Public Health Department reported the first death of a Franklin County resident from COVID-19 last Wednesday.


The individual was a man in his 70s who was hospitalized and had no known underlying health concerns. The case had already been investigated by the health department for close contacts.


In their latest news release as of Wednesday, county health officials reported 24 active cases of COVID-19 in Franklin County and 41 recovered cases. While the vast majority of cases the county has seen are believed to be relatively mild, health department interim director Nick Robbins urged residents to take precautions to keep themselves and those around them healthy.


"Those that have been given quarantine/isolation orders should take them seriously and not risk the health of others for their personal pleasure," he said. "This is a tragic loss of life and we extend our sincerest condolences to the family."


Protecting community health remains a top priority, health officials said. Franklin County residents should continue to adhere to the following recommendations as much as possible:


• Avoid nonessential trips and stay home to the extent you can.


• Wear a mask in public spaces.


• Continue to socially distance yourself from individuals you do not reside with.


• Thoroughly clean and disinfect surfaces.


• Wash your hands for at least 20 seconds several times a day.