CDC Confirms First Travel-Related Case of China Coronavirus Detected in US

Edward Kim  |

CDC confirms US patient in Washington state

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) today confirmed the first case of the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) in the US in the state of Washington. The patient returned from Wuhan, China, where an outbreak of pneumonia caused by 2019-nCoV has been ongoing since December 2019, on January 15, 2020. He is in his 30s and is reported to be in good condition at Providence Regional Medical Center in Everett, Washington, about 25 miles north of Seattle.

Coronaviruses

Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses that can cause respiratory illness in people who circulate among animals including camels, cats and bats. In rare cases, animal coronaviruses can evolve and infect people and then spread between people, such as has been seen with Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) and Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS).

When person-to-person spread has occurred with SARS and MERS, it is thought to happen via respiratory droplets with close contacts, similar to how the flu is spread.

This situation with 2019-nCoV is still unclear. While six deaths have been reported in China, other patients have had milder illness and been discharged. Symptoms associated with this virus have included fever, cough and trouble breathing. While the confirmation that some limited person-to-person spread with this virus is occurring in Asia clearly raises the level of concern, the CDC continues to believe the risk of 2019-nCoV to the American public at large remains low at this time.

CDC has been implementing safety measures

The CDC has developed guidance for clinicians for testing and management of 2019-nCoV, as well as guidance for home care. The agency has also developed a diagnostic test to detect the virus in clinical specimens. Currently, testing must take place at CDC, but the agency will be sharing these tests broadly in the coming days and weeks.

Last Friday, Jan. 17, 2020, the CDC began implementing entry screening at these international airports:

  • San Francisco (SFO)
  • John F. Kennedy, New York (JFK)
  • Los Angeles (LAX)

This week, the agency will add health screening at:

  • Atlanta (ATL)
  • Chicago (ORD)

A CDC team has been deployed to support the ongoing investigation in the state of Washington, including potentially tracing close contacts to determine if anyone else has become ill.

Equities.com will post updates as soon as we become aware of them.

Edward Kim is Managing Editor of Equities.com.

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Source: Equities News

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