KITCHENER -- The Haldimand-Norfolk Health Unit has confirmed its first death related to COVID-19.

In a media release, officials say the former resident of an area retirement home died at West Haldimand General Hospital on Friday.

“I’m saddened to learn of this loss of life due to COVID-19,” said Dr. Shanker Nesathurai, the Medical Officer of Health for Haldimand-Norfolk. “This underscores the importance of continued vigilance in the face of this virus and the necessity of assertive actions such as self-isolation and social distancing.”

The health unit also confirms that five people have tested positive for COVID-19 in Haldimand and Norfolk Counties as of Saturday.

On Thursday, Hadimand-Norfolk Health Unit confirmed their first case.

A public health management plan has been initiated by the health unit, according to the media release.

The plan includes placing all residents of the affected institution in isolation and initiating a case management program.