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Hill Air Force Base confirms first COVID-19 case

FILE PHOTO: An F-35 aircraft is displayed at Hill Air Force Base on Thursday, Oct. 26, 2017. Hill AFB confirmed its first case of COVID-19 March 20. (Photo: Spenser Heaps/Deseret News)

HILL AFB, Utah — The Hill Air Force Base confirmed its first case of COVID-19 Friday, saying the member is being treated and evaluated by health care professionals at the base.

“This is our first confirmed case,” said Col Jon Eberlan, 75th Air Base Wing commander in a statement. “The continued safety and well-being of the installation is my top priority. We are working with our base medical staff and off-base health care agencies to ensure we mitigate the effects of COVID-19 using established Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and Defense Department guidelines.”

The confirmed case comes one day after Hill AFB declared a public health emergency Thursday. It also declared being in Health Protection Condition Bravo to reflect the risk to of exposure to personnel.

Officials at the base report working closely with the Utah Department of Health to coordinate further prevention and response efforts in the local area.

“We are encouraging all personnel to follow Force Health Protection guidelines to safeguard our community to prevent widespread outbreak, and adhere to travel advisories and restrictions,” Eberlan said.

Personnel at the base recommend social distancing practices as well as proper hygiene to prevent the spread of the virus.

Hill Air Force Base leadership say they’ll provide updates on the situation as it becomes available.