SUDBURY -- Sault Ste. Marie's hospital has announced the first death at the facility connected to COVID-19.

On Monday, Wendy Hansson, president and CEO, and Dr. Silvana Spadafora, chief of staff of Sault Area Hospital, said the person died Sunday night.

"Last night, a patient being treated at Sault Area Hospital for COVID-19 passed away," the statement said. "On behalf of our entire hospital, we wish to extend our deepest condolences to the family during this difficult time."

Working with our health care partners, the hospital continues to take strong measures to protect our patients, our people, and our community, the statement said.

"Sault Area Hospital’s compassionate and caring, highly trained staff and physicians continue their unrelenting focus on caring for all patients throughout these extraordinary times."

The death is the latest fatality related to the pandemic. Nine people have died in the area covered by the Porcupine Health Unit, while Health Sciences North in Greater Sudbury has reported five deaths and the North Bay Parry Sound Districts Health Unit and the Timiskaming Health Unit have each reported one.