Image Credit: File

Washington: Officials in Washington state said a person has died of COVID-19, the first such death in the United States.

The first US coronavirus fatality was a "medically high-risk patient in her late 50s," President Donald Trump told reporters at the White House on Saturday.

"She was a wonderful woman,” he said.

Trump discussed the latest novel coronavirus developments after a briefing from his coronavirus task force earlier in the day.

Less than an hour before Trump's news conference, Washington state officials confirmed the death.

Infected by 'unknown means'

Earlier on Saturday, health officials in California, Oregon and Washington state on Saturday express concern over the novel coronavirus spreading through West Coast communities after confirming three patients were infected by unknown means.

The patients — an older Northern California woman with chronic health conditions, a high school student in Everett, Washington and an employee at a Portland, Oregon-area school — hadn’t recently traveled overseas or had any known close contact with a traveler or an infected person, authorities said.

Earlier U.S. cases include three people who were evacuated from the central China city of Wuhan, epicenter of the outbreak; 14 people who returned from China, or their spouses; and 42 American passengers on the Diamond Princess cruise ship, who were flown to U.S. military bases in California and Texas for quarantining.