California authorities are trying to find everybody who touched with a woman believed to be the first recognized coronavirus case in the U.S. of unknown origin
DON THOMPSON and ADAM BEAM Associated Press
February 28, 2020, 1: 53 AM
5 minutes read
Public health authorities were backtracking the steps of a Northern California woman on Thursday thought to be the very first person in the U.S. to contract the highly infectious coronavirus without taking a trip internationally or being in close contact with anyone who had it.
The diagnosis, verified Wednesday, marks an escalation of the around the world outbreak in the U.S. because it suggests the infection could now spread beyond the reach of quarantines and other preventative procedures. But state health officials were quick to assure the public on Thursday that such a circumstance was inevitable and the danger of prevalent transmission remained low.
Solano County Public Health Officer Dr. Bela Matyas stated public health authorities have recognized dozens of individuals– but less than 100– who had close contact with the female. Those people are quarantined in their houses. A couple of have actually revealed signs and are in isolation, Matyas stated.
The case raised questions about how rapidly public health officials are transferring to identify and treat brand-new cases. State and federal health authorities disagreed about when doctors initially requested the woman be evaluated.
Doctors at the UC Davis Medical Center stated they asked the U.S. Centers for Illness Control and Avoidance to check the female for the infection on Feb.19 But they stated the CDC did not authorize the testing till Sunday “given that the patient did not fit the existing CDC criteria” for the virus, according to a memo published to the hospital’s website.
CDC representative Richard Quartarone said a preliminary evaluation of company records suggests the agency did not understand about the woman until Sunday, the same day the female was very first tested.
Quartarone said the firm is worried about reports of postponed screening and is “investigating this thoroughly.” He said the CDC can evaluate about 400 specimens daily.
California Gov. Gavin Newsom stated the state was limited in the number of individuals it might test because it just had 200 testing packages. But he said federal authorities have actually guaranteed to send out much more in the coming days.
” I’m not going to politicize this moment And I’m not going to point fingers,” Newsom said. “We have had an extremely strong working relationship with the (Trump) administration.”
Detectives were concentrated on tracing the woman’s motions to determine how she got the infection and who else she may have unintentionally contaminated. The female initially looked for treatment at NorthBay VacaValley Healthcare Facility in Vacaville, a city of more than 100,000 individuals about 59 miles (95 kilometers) from San Francisco.
10 experts from the CDC showed up Thursday and were heading to Vacaville to assist with the search, stated Dr. James Watt, interim state epidemiologist at the California Department of Public Health.
With the client as ground absolutely no, they are interviewing immediate relative. Then, just like any similar case, they are broadening the internet to include more remote relative who may have been in contact, social gatherings like church that the client might have attended, and any possible time spent at work or events like a show.
They are not too anxious, in the meantime, about casual contact, because federal authorities believe the coronavirus is spread out only through “close contact, being within six feet of somebody for what they’re calling a prolonged duration of time,” said Watt, who was the state’s deputy epidemiologist for 10 years before he took the interim post 2 months earlier.
” That’s more than casual contact at a supermarket,” Watt said. “That’s where our focus is going to be. … What was the pattern of disease transmission?”
All of the 59 other cases in the U.S. have been for people who had traveled abroad or had close contact with others who took a trip.
Earlier U.S. cases included 14 in individuals who returned from outbreak areas in China, or their spouses; three people who were evacuated from the central China city of Wuhan; and 42 American guests on the Diamond Princess cruise liner who were evacuated by the federal government to the U.S. from where the ship was docked in Japan.
A few of those individuals have been treated at Travis Flying force Base, situated in Solano County where the Northern California female lives. However there is no proof the woman has any connection to the base, stated Sonia Angell, director of the California Department of Public Health.
The international count of those sickened by the infection hovered Thursday around 82,000, with 433 new cases reported in China and another 505 in South Korea.
The brand-new infection is a member of the coronavirus household that can cause colds or more serious diseases such as SARS and MERS.
The virus can cause fever, coughing, wheezing and pneumonia. Health officials believe it spreads primarily from droplets when a contaminated individual coughs or sneezes, comparable to how the flu spreads.
Officials are recommending people to take actions to avoid infection with coronavirus or other breathing infections like colds or the flu, consisting of washing hands with soap and water and preventing close contact with individuals who are ill.
Beam reported from Sacramento, California.
The Associated Press Health and Science Department receives assistance from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute’s Department of Science Education. The AP is solely accountable for all material.
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