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Two pending Monterey County coronavirus tests were confirmed San Benito County cases



UPDATE 2/4/2020 10:45 a.m. Karen Smith with the Monterey County Health Department said the two people being tested for the novel coronavirus in Monterey County were the two people with confirmed cases in San Benito County.

Smith said that because San Benito County does not have a public health lab, the two were tested in Monterey County.

They were two of the three people tested for the virus in Monterey County. The other person's results came back negative.

UPDATE 1/31/2020 2:15 p.m. Donna Ferguson, the Monterey County Public Health Lab Director, said there have been no positive tests for the novel coronavirus so far.

The Health Department is still waiting for the results of two tests.

UPDATE 1/29/2020 6:56 p.m. Samples from three people in Monterey County are being looked at with a closer eye. The Monterey County Health Department said three people are being tested for the deadly Coronavirus.

"In Monterey County we've received some travelers from Wuhan, China. We are following the guidance from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the California Department of Public Health on how to asses these individuals," said Dr. Edward Moreno with the Monterey County Health Department.

Moreno said those three people people either traveled from Wuhan in the past 14 days, or were exposed to someone infected with Coronavirus.

The Monterey County Public Health Lab collected samples from all three individuals and sent them to the CDC. Moreno said, at this time, the CDC is the only institution that can test for Coronavirus.

"We have one person that tested negative. We are still waiting for results from the CDC on the others," said Moreno.

There have been no confirmed cases of the Coronavirus in Monterey County. Still, those who live in the area said they are worried. Five people have been diagnosed with the virus in the United States, including California.

"I felt like it should've been contained earlier. Now there are cases of people that are here. I feel like if they were traveling from China, they should've been inspected in China before setting foot over here," said resident, Leslie Palomero.

The Monterey County Health Department said protecting yourself from the Coronavirus is simple and can be done the same way as the Flu. This includes washing your hands, wiping down surfaces, and staying away from anyone that appears sick.

"I called my mom to tell her to be careful. She gets sick really quickly. I told her to put on a mask and be sure to wash her hands," said resident, Ryan Chu.

PREVIOUS STORY: The Monterey County Health Department confirms that four people in Monterey County have been tested for the novel coronavirus.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention agreed to test them when they met requirements for testing. All four were in Wuhan, China in the 14 days before the onset of their symptoms or were exposed to someone with a confirmed case of the novel coronavirus.

So far, one of the people has tested negative, but the Health Department is still waiting on results for the other three.

According to the CDC, of the 165 people tested for the novel coronavirus in the United States, five have tested positive, and California, Washington, Arizona and Illinois are the states that have had confirmed cases.

The virus was first detected in Wuhan, China as a respiratory illness in December 2019, according to the CDC. It is part of a large family of viruses. The CDC said it considers the novel coronavirus a very serious public health threat, but the risk to the general American public is considered low at this time.

Symptoms of the disease include fever, cough and shortness of breath, and it can appear in as few as two days or as many as 14.

There is currently a travel notice in effect for those planning to visit China. It is at warning level 3, so the CDC recommends avoiding all nonessential travel to the area.

A map created by Johns Hopkins University's Center for Systems Science and Engineering reports that there have been 133 deaths worldwide and 126 recoveries. In mainland China, there are more than 6,000 confirmed cases of the virus.

KION546 News Team


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