US virus cases climb to 35 with return of cruise passengers

Latest News

US virus cases climb to 35 with return of cruise passengers

Friday, February 21, 2020

Print this page Email A Friend!


CALIFORNIA, United States (AP) — At least 18 Americans who returned home from a quarantined cruise ship are infected with the new China virus, bringing the number of cases in the US to 35, health officials said Friday.

More confirmed cases are likely among the returned passengers from the Diamond Princess which had been quarantined in Japan, the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said. More than 300 passengers were flown back to the US last weekend and are now quarantined for two weeks at military bases and hospitals.

The US tally dates back to January 21 and includes three people who were evacuated from the central China city of Wuhan, where the outbreak began. The rest are mostly travellers who fell ill after trips to China; two spread it to their spouses.

New traveller cases were announced this week in California, including one person in Humboldt County, who is said to be doing well and in isolation at home. On Friday, Sacramento County officials said a resident who returned from China earlier this month has tested positive.

More than 76,000 cases have been reported worldwide, mostly in China.

Of the US patients, some have recovered. Others are being treated in special isolation units in hospitals. The virus causes a flu-like illness and can cause pneumonia.

“We're not seeing community spread in the United States yet,” the CDC's Dr Nancy Messonnier said during a Friday briefing for reporters. “It's possible, even likely, it will eventually happen.”

The CDC is adapting its 2017 guidelines for preventing pandemic flu for use if the virus starts spreading widely in the United States, Messonnier said. Closing schools and cancelling gatherings could become necessary.

To detect whether the virus already is spreading silently beyond the known cases, the CDC is adding testing to the network that normally tracks flu. When a patient sample tests negative for flu, lab workers will check it for the new virus.

That additional testing will begin next week, Messonnier said.

Nearly all the Americans evacuated from Wuhan are no longer in quarantine. The ship passengers are quarantined at military bases and hospitals in California, Texas and Nebraska. Additionally, anyone who has been in mainland China in the past two weeks is being asked to quarantine themselves when they return home and watch for symptoms of the illness — fever, cough and shortness of breath.

In California, health officials said that amounts to 7,600 people. They are being asked to monitor their health, stay home and limit interactions with others as much as possible, the California Department of Public Health said Friday.


Now you can read the Jamaica Observer ePaper anytime, anywhere. The Jamaica Observer ePaper is available to you at home or at work, and is the same edition as the printed copy available at http://bit.ly/epaperlive


ADVERTISEMENT




POST A COMMENT

HOUSE RULES

1. We welcome reader comments on the top stories of the day. Some comments may be republished on the website or in the newspaper � email addresses will not be published.

2. Please understand that comments are moderated and it is not always possible to publish all that have been submitted. We will, however, try to publish comments that are representative of all received.

3. We ask that comments are civil and free of libellous or hateful material. Also please stick to the topic under discussion.

4. Please do not write in block capitals since this makes your comment hard to read.

5. Please don't use the comments to advertise. However, our advertising department can be more than accommodating if emailed: advertising@jamaicaobserver.com.

6. If readers wish to report offensive comments, suggest a correction or share a story then please email: community@jamaicaobserver.com.

7. Lastly, read our Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy



comments powered by Disqus
ADVERTISEMENT

Poll

ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT

Today's Cartoon

Click image to view full size editorial cartoon
ADVERTISEMENT