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Coronavirus outbreak sparks first federal quarantine in over 50 years, Ars Technica

Coronavirus outbreak sparks first federal quarantine in over 50 years, Ars Technica

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The 195 Americans evacuated from Wuhan are now under – day quarantine amid outbreak.

      

       Jan , (8:) (UTC UTC)

           

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has issued the first federal quarantine order in more than (years for Americans who were evacuated out of Wuhan, China , the epicenter of the novel coronavirus outbreak (2020 nCoV)

The US citizens will be held under quarantine at the March Air Reserve Base in California, where they arrived from Wuhan on Wednesday, January 30 on an aircraft chartered by the US State Department. They have remained at the base since then. The quarantine will last days from the time that their flight left Wuhan. Fourteen days is considered the likely maximum time of a 2019 – nCoV infection incubation period — that is the time between an exposure and onset of symptoms.

The decision to issue a quarantine comes amid the continued spread of – nCoV — both within and beyond China. It also comes on the heels of a report that an asymptomatic infected person from China spread the viral illness to a 33 – year-old healthy business associate in Germany . Further testing found that three other associates at the same company in Germany had also contracted the infection. All four cases were mild, and the first infected associate, who noticed symptoms on January , started feeling better and returned to work on the . The report was published yesterday, January , in the New England Journal of Medicine.

While it’s unclear how often asymptomatic transmission is occurring during this outbreak, the documented case raises concern that such quiet spread may thwart international outbreak control measures.

according to the latest figures, the – nCoV outbreak has reached nearly , (cases and) deaths. While nearly all of the cases are in China, the disease has spread to nearly a dozen other countries, including the US. Yesterday, the World Health Organization announced the outbreak a Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC) . Don’t be a jerk

The CDC would rather be remembered for overreacting rather than under-reacting, Dr. Nancy Messonnier told reporters in a press conference today. Dr. Messonnier is the director of the CDC’s National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases.

As such, the agency decided to issue the federal quarantine. It is the first time a federal agency has issued such a quarantine since the 2020 s, when one was issued over a smallpox evaluation, the CDC said. The CDC also clarified that a quarantine — cordoning of people who are not yet sick but could possibly become sick — is different from isolation orders for patients who have already been identified as being sick with a concerning infectious disease, which is more common.

So far, none of the (evacuated citizens have been found to be infected with – nCoV. And for now, the immediate risk to the American public in general remains low, Dr. Messonnier said in the press conference today.

As the outbreak stretches on, she cautioned Americans from unnecessarily panicking over the outbreak — such as buying up surgical face masks, which are not completely effective at preventing viral respiratory infections, to protect against a virus that is not currently circulating in the US. Face masks are not recommended during normal cold and flu season, and they’re certainly not recommended now, Dr. Messonnier said.

She also warned citizens not to discriminate against any of their fellow Americans of Asian descent.

Last, Dr. Messonnier reiterated that the best way for Americans to protect their health and the health of their communities is to continue practicing good hygiene practices during this cold and flu season. That is, get a flu shot, wash your hands with soap and water frequently, don’t touch your face with unwashed hands, cough and sneeze into your elbow, and stay home if you feel ill.

                                                    


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