Federal health officials with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have confirmed the first case of human-to-human transmission of the Wuhan coronavirus in the United States. The new patient is married to a Chicago woman who was diagnosed with the virus after returning from a trip to Wuhan, China, which is where the viral outbreak originated.
The latest diagnosis brings the total number of U.S. patients to contract the virus to six. Authorities did not release details about the condition of the woman or her husband.
There have been over 7,800 people diagnosed with the Wuhan coronavirus around the world. The patients are mostly from the Hubei province in China. Chinese health officials have said that least 170 have died after contracting the virus. As they try to prevent the outbreak from spreading, officials have quarantined over 50 million people in more than a dozen cities around Wuhan, which has a population of 11 million people.
As the outbreak continues to spread, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared it a global public health emergency. The WHO explained that while the virus is mostly concentrated in China, they are concerned that it could spread to other countries which are not equipped to deal with it.
"Our greatest concern is the potential for the virus to spread to countries with weaker health systems and which are ill-prepared to deal with it," WHO director-general, Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said.
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