On March 1, a woman in her late thirties has been confirmed as the first novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) patient in New York State in the United States, after returning from a trip to Iran – the Middle East’s worst-hit nation by the deadly virus. The virus is known to cause the disease called COVID-19.
She has reportedly been placed in isolation at home, according to New York Governor Andrew M. Cuomo. “The patient has respiratory symptoms, but is not in serious condition and has been in a controlled situation since arriving in New York,” said Governor Cuomo.
Samples from the woman were tested in a laboratory in Albany and her results will be reviewed by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in Atlanta.
Second death in Washington State
A second US patient has succumbed to the coronavirus on the night of March 1 in Washington State. The patient who was in his 70s reportedly had underlying health issues and had not traveled abroad.
A state of emergency is in effect in Washington State after the second fatality was recorded in the EvergreenHealth Medical Center in Kirkland, which is the same nursing care facility of the first victim. Both were also residents of King County, where three other cases of coronavirus were confirmed in the past week – bringing the total to 13 in the state.
An employee at the US Postal Service (USPS) was among those tested positive for the coronavirus in King County. USPS, however, claims that the current risk to other employees being infected is low. “In consultation with the King County Public Health Department, we have been informed the current risk to our employees is low,” it said in an emailed statement to CNBC. “The safety and well-being of our employees are one of our highest priorities.”
Researchers in Washington State believe that the virus might have been spreading around the community and could have infected large numbers of people over the past six weeks.
Community spread in California
A resident of Solano County, California may be the first example in the US of community spread. The patient who had contracted the coronavirus has no relevant travel record and there is no evidence of being exposed to another coronavirus patient.
According to the CDC, the case was detected through California’s public health system and the patient is undergoing treatment in Sacramento.
As of March 2, there are 88 confirmed coronavirus cases in the US.