The first case of the Novel Coronavirus has been identified in Washington state.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have announced the arrival of a new flu strain to the United States. The Novel Coronavirus is a respiratory illness that originated at a seafood market in Wuhan, Hubei Province, China. The virus has sickened 300 people and killed two adults, one with underlying medical conditions. The first U.S. case was identified in Washington state this week, and U.S. officials are taking precautions to keep the virus from spreading.

What is the Novel Coronavirus?

The Novel Coronavirus is a respiratory virus similar to SARS and MERS. Coronaviruses derive from animals, including bats and camels, and can spread to humans. Officials in China identified this coronavirus and determined it came from the Wuhan South China Seafood City Market, which has been closed and disinfected.

doctor and patient

Courtesy CDC, Scott Housley

What Are the Symptoms of Coronavirus?

If you fall sick from coronavirus you could experience fever, cough, and trouble breathing. About 45 people in China have contracted pneumonia as a result of getting sick from the Novel Coronavirus. Officials are not sure if the virus is spreading from person to person. The patient from Washington returned from Wuhan, China, on January 15, 2020, and went to a doctor to seek treatment. The man is in isolation and is expected to recover quickly.

Should Americans Be Worried About Contracting This Virus? 

The CDC says the risk of contracting this illness is low for Americans. They are taking precautions by working with the World Health Organization and screening for sick passengers at some U.S. airports. Passengers traveling from Wuhan to San Francisco, New York’s JFK, Los Angeles, Atlanta, and Chicago’s O’Hare International airports will be subject to health screenings. Cases of the coronavirus have also been reported in Thailand and Japan.