The first US case of the 2019 novel coronavirus had been identified. Here is what you need to know about the illness responsible for sickening >500 individuals and the death of 17.
Brief Background on 2019 Novel Coronavirus. Animal-to-person spread initially presumed; WHO now says person-to-person transmission is possible and if true this could greatly complicate containment efforts. 2019-nCoV is in the same family of infections as severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) and Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS).
What to Look For--CDC Interim Guidance. CDC notes these criteria are intended to serve as guidance for evaluation and have been developed using what is known about MERS-CoV and SARS-CoV; they are subject to change as additional information becomes available. Physicians should evaluate and discuss patients with public health departments on a case-by-case basis if their clinical presentation or exposure history is equivocal.
1Fever may not be present in some patients, such as those who are very young, elderly, immunosuppressed, or taking certain fever-lowering medications. Clinical judgment should be used to guide testing of patients in such situations. 2Close contact is defined as-a) being within approximately 6 feet (2 meters), or within the room or care area, of a novel coronavirus case for a prolonged period of time while not wearing recommended personal protective equipment (PPE); close contact can include caring for, living with, visiting, or sharing a health care waiting area or room with a novel coronavirus case or, b) having direct contact with infectious secretions of a novel coronavirus case (eg, being coughed on) while not wearing recommended PPE.
If You Have a Patient Under Investigation: Immediately notify infection control personnel at your facility & local/state health department. Health departments should immediately contact CDC's EOC 770-488-7100 and complete a 2019-nCoV PUI case investigation form. At this time, diagnostic testing can be conducted only at the CDC, but in the coming days and weeks, CDC will share these tests with domestic and international partners.
CDC Interim Prevention & Control Recommendations. Give patient a surgical mask and conduct evaluation in private or isolation room. CDC recommends that healthcare personnel use all standard and other exposure precautions.
Additional Infection Control Practices Resources
How to Increase the Likelihood of Virus Detection. Collect specimens ASAP once a PUI is identified regardless of time of symptom onset. Collect & test multiple clinical specimens from different sites, including all 3 specimen types-lower respiratory, upper respiratory, serum. For additional guidance on handling specimens, see: Interim Guidelines for Collecting, Handling, and Testing Clinical Specimens from Patients Under Investigation (PUIs) for 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV)
The CDC reported Tuesday the first US case of the illness caused by the novel coronavirus (nCoV) that emerged in China late in 2019. The individual, in his 30s, recently traveled to the city of Wuhan, China, where the virus was first reported. He is hospitalized and currently listed in good condition. The virus was confirmed by laboratory testing at the CDC.The details change hourly but the most recent report from US news sources reporting in China on Wednesday, January 22, 2020, is that more than 500 cases and 17 deaths have been reported in and around the city of Wuhan. Cases have been identified in Thailand, South Korea, Japan, and Taiwan.Patient Care has put together a brief slide show on what primary care physicians should know about the virus, its spread, clinical features to watch for, and infection prevention and control measures.