US reports first case of coronavirus from person to person


Health authorities in the United States reported on Thursday the first known case in the country of person-to-person transmission of a new virus originating in China.

The patient is married to a woman in Chicago who became ill after returning from a trip to Wuhan, China, the epicenter of the outbreak. There have been reported cases of spread of the virus to others in a home or workplace in China and elsewhere.

The new case is the sixth detected in the United States. The other five are travelers who reported the disease after returning from China. The last patient had not traveled to the Asian country.

The Chicago woman returned from Wuhan on January 13. Last week he went to the hospital and was diagnosed with viral disease. She and her husband, both in their 60s, are hospitalized.

Experts have said they expected additional cases, and that at least a limited spread in the United States was likely. Health authorities think that the new virus spreads mostly when an infected person coughs or sneezes, as with influenza.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the health authorities of the state of Illinois said medical staff and others who have been in contact with the new patient are being monitored.

“We anticipated this,” said Dr. William Schaffner, an infectious disease expert at Vanderbilt University. “The type of contact one has in the home is very close and prolonged. It is the kind of circumstance in which you can expect a virus like this to be transmitted. ”

The virus can cause fever, cough, gasp and pneumonia. It has made thousands of people sick, mostly in China, and caused 170 deaths.

The other cases in the United States are in Arizona, California and the state of Washington.

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