Coronavirus: COVID-19 spread halted in New England North West, as health district records first death

The coronavirus count is stable in the region, with not a single new case of COVID-19 recorded in the New England or North West in latest statistics.

But the local health district recorded its first death caused by the pandemic disease on Sunday.

With Walcha, Gwydir and Moree local government areas still without their first case, the virus has not spread by a single recorded case in two days.

And Tamworth itself has not recorded a new case for six days, with 12 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in statistics released on Sunday.

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But Hunter New England Health District on Sunday revealed a 76-year-old man from the region had succumbed to the virus in a Sydney hospital.

The man, a resident of the region, had been a passenger on the ill-fated Ruby Princess cruise ship

He had previously been diagnosed with coronavirus before being admitted to Westmead Hospital in Sydney. He died of complications caused by COVID-19 on Saturday, April 4.

In a statement, Hunter New England Local Health District offered its sincere condolences to his family and friends.

The ship was allowed to dock and discharge passengers on March 19. Eleven of them have since died, with hundreds of passengers and crew testing positive to the virus.

NSW police minister Mick Fuller Sunday announced a criminal investigation into the disaster.

The Hunter New England health district has recorded 245 confirmed cases in Sunday's statistics, with four more confirmed cases since Friday. Ten patients are in hospital, five in intensive care, and 76 people have recovered from the virus so far.

The source of at least one of the 12 Tamworth cases is unknown in figures released on Sunday. Tenterfield also had at least one case without a known source of infection.

Armidale, the Liverpool Plains, Inverell, Glen Innes, Gunnedah and Uralla are all recorded as having at least one case of the virus.

Latest statistics show there are 2580 confirmed cases of the virus in NSW, with 87 more people getting coronavirus since Friday. 118,863 have been tested for the disease.

COVID-19 has killed 16 people in NSW so far.

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