New Cases of Cornona Virus in Texas

Barbara Schwarz
February 21, 2020 - 3:14 pm
Hospital Laboratory

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DALLAS (KRLD) - A total of 329 Americans were evacuated from the Diamond Princess cruise ship, which remains docked in Japan.

Passengers were then transported to Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio or Travis Air Force Base in northern California.  Two tested positive in San Antonio, five in California.

Dr. Nancy Messonnier is the Director of the National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases with the Center for Disease Control.  "This new virus represents a tremendous public health threat.  We don't yet have a vaccine for this novel virus, nor do we have a medicine to treat it specifically."

She says "We should expect to see additional cases.  Some of these passengers are still in what we consider the incubation period, which we know to be 10 to 14 days.  And until we're through that period we won't have a good feel for how many additional cases there are."

Dr. William Walters with the CDC says the individuals were moved off the ship with every effort made to isolate them, calling it an emerging and unusual circumstance.  "The State Department had a decision to make informed by our inter-agency partners, and we went ahead and made that decision.  The decision was the right one in bringing those people home."

Still, the State Department is warning Americans against taking cruises to or within Asia and says they shouldn't count on the State Department to help get them to get home if they are asked to quarantine overseas

Thursday marked the end of the 14-day quarantine for the first group of coronavirus evacuees at Lackland from China.