A patient in Southern California has become the third person in the U.S. to be diagnosed with the new pneumonia-like virus from China, according to health officials.
The Centers for Disease Control confirmed a traveler from the Chinese city of Wuhan, which is where the outbreak began, tested positive for the virus.
That patient is in isolation at a hospital and is in good condition, a release from the agency states.
The virus can cause fever, coughing, wheezing and pneumonia. It is a member of the coronavirus family, which is in turn related to the deadly SARS and MERS viruses that caused outbreaks in previous years.
— CDC (@CDCgov) January 24, 2020
The first known case in California follows the first domestic diagnosis in Washington state on January 21 and another in Chicago last Friday. Both of those patients — in Washington, a man in his 30s, and in Chicago, a woman in her 60s — had traveled to China.
The death toll from the virus in China has reached 56 so far. That country has issued massive travel bans in hard-hit sections of its borders while it tries to stop the virus from spreading. Meanwhile, the U.S. Consulate in Wuhan announced on Sunday that it would evacuate its personnel as well as some private citizens aboard a charter flight.
The CDC expects more Americans to be diagnosed with the virus, which is believed to have an incubation period of about two weeks. The worldwide number of confirmed cases is approaching 2,000.
In addition, the CDC is screening passengers on direct and connecting flights from Wuhan at major airports in Atlanta, Chicago, New York City, San Francisco and Los Angeles.