Registered nurses in the endoscopy unit at Berkshire Medical Center (BMC) in Pittsfield, ready endoscopy machines for transport from the hospital to the Crane Center, a separate building on the Berkshire Health Systems property, where patients will temporarily undergo all upcoming necessary outpatient endoscopies. Credit: Stephanie Zollshan | AP

As of 11 a.m. Friday, March 20, 44 Maine residents have been confirmed positive and 12 others are presumed positive for the coronavirus, according to the state. Click here for the latest coronavirus news, which the BDN has made free for the public. You can support this mission by purchasing a digital subscription.

BOSTON — Massachusetts confirmed its first death from the coronavirus on Friday, while the state’s attorney general filed an order banning price gouging.

Here’s a look at developments in Massachusetts.


The state Department of Public Health said Friday a man in his 80s from Suffolk County is the first person in Massachusetts to die from the illness caused by the virus.

Public health officials said the man had been hospitalized and had preexisting health conditions that put him at higher risk.

[Interactive map: The number of confirmed coronavirus cases in each state]

To date, 3,132 residents of Massachusetts have been tested for the virus that causes COVID-19. Of those, 328 people have tested positive. New numbers are expected later Friday.

Gov Charlie Baker offered his condolences to the man’s family.

“We are living in uncertain and challenging times, and our administration is bringing every available resource to bear in the fight against this disease,” Baker said in a news release.

For most people, the coronavirus causes only mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough. For some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness, including pneumonia, or death. The vast majority of people recover.


Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey filed an emergency regulation Friday banning price gouging of essential products and services during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Healey, a Democrat, said the regulation “prohibits price gouging of goods and services necessary for public health and safety during a declared statewide or national emergency.”

The state’s only existing price gouging regulation is related to the sale of gasoline and other petroleum products. Healey said her office has heard from hospitals and consumers about skyrocketing prices for things like hand sanitizer, face masks, gloves and other essential gear.

Watch: What older adults need to know about COVID-19