Coronavirus from China has made its way to the United States

Images of people wearing respiratory masks in a Chinese railway station.

Enlarge / Travelers in
China are often wearing protective masks in response to the spread
of 2019nCoV (credit: Feature China / Barcroft Media via Getty
Images)

On Tuesday afternoon, the US Centers for Disease Control
announced that the coronavirus that’s been spreading within China
had made it to the United States. A patient in Washington state is
the first confirmed case in the US, although indications are that
the disease has
already spread to other countries in Asia
.

A single patient in Washington had been traveling in Wuhan, the
area of China hardest hit by the newly described virus, before
returning to the US last week. Shortly after their return, the
patient was hospitalized with pneumonia-like symptoms. The hospital
staff, based on the travel history and symptoms, suspected that the
new virus, called 2019-nCoV, might be at fault, and sent samples in
to the CDC for testing. Those tests confirmed the virus’
identity.

While the initial cases were confined to people who had been in
contact with live animals at a seafood market, suggesting that it
should be possible to contain the virus. But since then, the news
has gotten worse. In addition to spreading to other
countries—Thailand and Japan had confirmed cases prior to the
US—the virus is now
confirmed to be spreading through human contact
, which has
helped increase the number of cases and enabled its spread to other
cities within China. There have also been a number of reported
fatalities, although these remain a small percentage of the
confirmed infections.

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Source: FS – All – Science – News
Coronavirus from China has made its way to the United States