A man who lives in Washington state was the first American to be diagnosed with the new coronavirus. He recently returned from visiting Wuhan, China and once back in the United States, started to have symptoms associated with the novel virus. He has been taken to the hospital remains in good condition according to officials. The man did state that he had not been to the Huanan Seafood Market during his visit to Wuhan. In an effort identify any other individuals who many have been infected, officials have begun to trace who the man has come into contact with since his return.
The Washington state case is the only one known outside of Asia at this time. Per Chinese officials, they’re up to at least 440 cases with nine deaths. Most of these cases are in Wuhan or the surrounding Hubei province. However, there have been cases reported in Beijing, Shanghai and southern parts of the Guangdong province. Cases have also been reported outside of China in Thailand, Japan, South Korea and Taiwan.
A Chinese scientist announced yesterday that the virus can be transmitted between humans. Despite this revelation, US public health officials feel that while there will be additional cases here, it’s unlikely to be widespread. The National Institute of Health (NIH) stated yesterday that they’re starting to work a vaccine for the new coronavirus. As an increased precaution, airports screenings are now going to be completed at Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport and Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, in addition the screenings already taking place in Los Angeles International Airport, San Francisco International Airport and John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York. Experts point out that the Washington state patient returned before these measures were put into place and even if they were in place, he was asymptomatic at the time and would not have been detected.