WASHINGTON – The death toll and number of people sick from the coronavirus continues to rise, as the US State Department issues a new travel warning.
American officials say at least two people in the US have now been diagnosed with the disease. The latest victim is a woman in Chicago who recently visited China. She's said to be hospitalized but doing well.
Officials at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention say the risk is relatively low for Americans, but they're monitoring at least three other possible new cases of the virus in the US.
A student at Texas A&M is self-quarantined in his home after returning from China. "The patient had mild symptoms and is improving so that is a really good sign," Dr. Eric Wilke with the Brazos County Health Authority, said Thursday.
At LAX, one of five US airports screening flyers, another man landing from Mexico is being tested for symptoms.
And a third possible case involves a student at Tennessee Tech University.
The first confirmed case in the US, a man in his 30's, is being monitored in bio-containment isolation outside Seattle.
"The immediate risk to the American public is low but the situation is evolving quickly and I do expect more cases in the United States," Dr. Nancy Messonnier with the Centers for Disease Control said.
China Racing to Contain the Virus
In just the last week, the virus has spread to ten countries, sickening more than 1,280 people and killing at least 41. Most of those deaths occurred in Wuhan, one of China's biggest travel hubs.
The city is overwhelmed as people there complain about not being able to be screened and the frantic construction of a new hospital, specifically for coronavirus patients, is underway.
A travel ban remains in place there, and nine other nearby cities, as health officials try to contain the outbreak. Right now more than 35 million people are under quarantine.
The American Embassy in Beijing has advised travelers from the US to avoid Wuhan and the Hubei Province. The US State Department has also ordered non-emergency government personnel to leave the city.