A military contractor in the US died after being infected by the COVID-19, marking it the first virus-related death in the US military, a news agency reported citing Pentagon officials. This comes as the country has reported 41,569 cases of infection along with 504 deaths.
In a recent statement, Pentagon revealed that the Arlington based contractor, who worked at the Defence Security Cooperation Agency(DSCA) passed away on March 21. According to reports, 67 service members, five civilian employees 26 dependents and 16 contactors in the military have tested positive for coronavirus as for now.
This comes as the Pentagon has scrambled to contain the rising number of cases in the military since the start of this month. It has reportedly suspended almost all non-essential travel for eight weeks for DOD personnel and families, limited access to pentagon and other military installations and scaled back exercises. Meanwhile, the US defence headquarters on March 20 had said that it was monitoring 2,600 military personnel in Europe for possible exposure to the coronavirus. According to reports, out of the 72,000 US forces in Europe, at least 35 have tested positive for the virus.
On March 16, the US Navy reported it’s first suspected case of coronavirus aboard a ship, international media reported. This came a week after another US Navy sailor stationed in Italy tested positive in COVID-19.
A Sailor assigned to the amphibious assault ship USS Boxer (LHD 4) tested 'presumptive positive' for Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19), marking the first case for a sailor aboard a Navy ship”
In the statement, the Navy revealed that although the sailor had been tested positive for the infection, the results still needed to be confirmed by the CDC. It added that he was already in self-quarantine and that people who had immediate contact with him have been notified and are in self-quarantine.