There are 15 confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus in the United States. The virus was most recently confirmed in evacuees from Wuhan, China, where the outbreak originated.
There are more US citizens traveling abroad who’ve been infected with coronavirus, including at least 24 Americans on a cruise ship in Japan.
The World Health Organization and the United States have declared the outbreak a public health emergency, but US officials have urged residents not to panic.
The novel coronavirus, which has sickened thousands and killed more than 1,300 people in China, belongs to a large family of viruses that mostly sicken animals. But this coronavirus, like SARS and MERS, “jumped the species barrier” to infect people on a large scale, the CDC said.
Here’s what we know about the cases in the US:
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention confirmed the 15th case of coronavirus on Thursday .
The patient has been under the 14-day federal quarantine since arriving at Lackland Air Force Base in Texas with other evacuees from China on February 7, the CDC said. The patient is now receiving medical care at a nearby hospital, the CDC said.
California has more than half of confirmed cases of the virus in the country at eight.
San Diego County
An evacuee at the Marine Corps Air Station Miramar was the 14th confirmed case of the novel coronavirus in the United States, the CDC said Wednesday.
The patient is among a group that was under a federal quarantine order after arriving at the base on a State Department-chartered flight on February 7, the CDC said. The patient was being treated at UC San Diego Health, the CDC said.
The virus was confirmed Monday in another patient who had arrived earlier at the Miramar base from Wuhan. The patient, who was being cared for at UC San Diego Health, is doing well with minimal symptoms, hospital officials said.
San Benito County
The confirmed cases are in a husband and wife, both 57, according to San Benito County Public Health Services
The husband had recently traveled from Wuhan, China. His wife hadn’t — another case of person-to-person transmission.
The couple had stayed at home since the man’s return from China, according to Dr. Martin Fenstersheib, the county’s interim public health officer. But on February 3, the couple was transported from San Benito County to an undisclosed hospital in San Francisco, said Rachael Kagan, a spokeswoman for the San Francisco Department of Public Health.
Santa Clara County
The ninth confirmed case in the country was identified February 2 as an adult woman who recently traveled to Wuhan, the Santa Clara County Public Health Department in California said.
The patient is a visitor in Santa Clara County, health officials said, and arrived on January 23 to visit family. She has remained at home ever since, except to seek medical care twice. “She has been regularly monitored and was never sick enough to be hospitalized,” the statement said.
Health officials in Santa Clara County on January 31 said a man became infected in China. Upon returning to Northern California on January 24, the man self-isolated and did not leave home, except to seek medical care. He was not sick enough to be hospitalized.
Los Angeles County
Details are sparse about a confirmed Los Angeles County patient, which was announced on January 26 by the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health. The patient is being treated at a local hospital, though the health department didn’t disclose how long the person sought treatment after exposure to the virus.
The patient is a returning traveler from Wuhan, China, the department said.
An Orange County man in his 50s flew into Los Angeles International Airport from Wuhan earlier this month. The county found out January 23, and the CDC confirmed his results that month. He’s in a local hospital.
Washington state: 1
The first confirmed US coronavirus patient, a 35-year-old man, sought treatment at an urgent care center in the state after returning from Wuhan. The urgent care center sent his samples to the CDC, which confirmed he had the coronavirus.
He entered isolated care at a hospital in Everett, about 30 miles north of Seattle, on January 23. He received treatment in an isolated gurney designed for patients with highly contagious diseases, and a robot took his vitals. He was discharged from the hospital on February 3, according to a statement from Providence Regional Medical Center. He remains in isolation at home undergoing treatment, the hospital said.
He’s in stable condition, said Dr. George Diaz, the man’s physician and an infectious disease expert. There’s no evidence that he transmitted the virus to anyone else.
The two Chicago patients, a woman and her husband in their 60s, were discharged February 6 from a hospital and are in isolation at their home under guidance from the CDC and the Illinois Department of Public Health, AMITA Health St. Alexius Medical Center spokesman Timothy Nelson told CNN.
“With it being an uncomfortable situation, the care and services we’ve received have been great. Everyone’s been very kind and very respectful,” the patients, who were not publicly identified, said in a statement from the hospital. “This has been the best health care experience we’ve ever had, but we’re definitely looking forward to getting home and getting life back to normal.”
The woman’s case was the first travel-associated case in the US. She was diagnosed a few days after she returned from Wuhan on January 13.
Her husband, who did not travel to China, was diagnosed in late January. His was the first case of person-to-person transmission of the virus in the US, the CDC confirmed.
The state health department confirmed that the patient is an “adult member” of the Arizona State University community, though it didn’t release the patient’s age or gender.
The patient called their health care provider when they began to experience mild respiratory symptoms. The CDC confirmed the coronavirus on January 26.
The patient isn’t hospitalized, but is self-isolated at home, the department said.
Students at the university petitioned the administration to cancel classes, saying they felt unsafe with a case of the virus on campus.
On February 1, officials confirmed a student in his 20s at the Boston campus of the University of Massachusetts had the virus.
The student had returned from Wuhan on January 29. He sought medical treatment after his return and has been isolated ever since. The few close contacts he had have been identified and monitored for symptoms.
The case poses no increased risk to other students on the schools’ campus, the medical director of the Boston Public Health Commission told reporters Saturday. He’s “doing quite well” in quarantine at his home and is being monitored by public health nurses.
The 12th confirmed case was announced on February 5 by the Wisconsin Department of Health Services. The adult patient has a history of travel to Beijing and was exposed to known cases while in China. The person is isolated at home and doing well, the department said.
Wisconsin health officials maintained that the threat to the general public remains low.
Who’s still at risk
The CDC is monitoring 600 people who have recently returned from Wuhan under federal quarantine, the first mandatory quarantine in more than 50 years.
Though health officials have confirmed person-to-person contact, they maintain the immediate risk to the public is low.
There are more than 570 confirmed cases of coronavirus and two deaths in more than 25 countries and territories outside mainland China. Worldwide, more than 60,000 people have been infected.
What’s being done
Restrictions apply to US citizens who have been in China’s Hubei province, the epicenter of the coronavirus outbreak, in the two weeks before their return to the United States. Upon their return, those citizens will be subject to a mandatory quarantine of up to 14 days, Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar said January 31.
Last month, the US State Department raised its China travel advisory to “Do Not Travel” and warned that it could put travel restrictions into effect with “little to no advance notice.” The CDC recommended US citizens to avoid nonessential travel to the country.
“If you are a traveler who has recently returned from the impacted area, we want you to be vigilant with the symptoms and signs of this coronavirus,” said Dr. Nancy Messonnier, director of the CDC’s National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases.
Local health officials are cracking down on misinformation related to the virus, including fake reports of confirmed cases and conspiracy theories about its spread. The most accurate information comes from county, state and federal health departments and is updated regularly as officials learn more.
Otherwise, the CDC encourages people to follow flu season protocol: Wash hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, avoid ill people and stay home and avoid public situations if they’re ill. A coronavirus vaccine would take at least a year to reach the public.
The CDC does not recommend Americans wear surgical masks in public. Surgical masks are effective against respiratory infections but not airborne infections.