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Online Discussion: Tracking new emerging diseases and the next pandemic; Now tracking the Wuhan Coronavirus COVID-19

N.C. health officials won't disclose possible coro

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Pixie View Drop Down
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    Posted: February 04 2020 at 8:26pm
https://www.greensboro.com/news/state/n-c-health-officials-won-t-disclose-possible-coronavirus-cases/article_20eac76c-8658-5146-9a60-567f3204cbc8.html

RALEIGH — State health officials say they will no longer announce when someone in North Carolina is being tested for the coronavirus, the deadly respiratory illness that flared up in China this month, unless and until the person has tested positive.

The change in policy is aimed at protecting the privacy of people who are being evaluated, the state Division of Public Health said Wednesday. The state says there have been no confirmed cases of coronavirus in North Carolina so far, and if that changes it will disclose the number of positive test results at its coronavirus website.

Last week, the state announced that it was investigating a possible coronavirus case in a person who passed through Wuhan City, where the outbreak originated in China, and had arrived at Raleigh-Durham International Airport last Thursday. On Saturday evening, it announced that the traveler was not carrying the virus.

We are pleased that test results were negative and that the patient remains in good health," Dr. Zack Moore, the state epidemiologist, said in a written statement.

The disclosure of the possible case in North Carolina got widespread media attention. Concerns about the illness caused organizers to cancel Chinese New Year festivals in Raleigh and Chapel Hill this weekend.


There have been six confirmed cases of coronavirus in the United States, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, none of them on the East Coast. In China, thousands have been sickened and more than 130 have died, according to the Associated Press.

International airlines have suspended flights to China, and the U.S. and other countries have begun evacuating people from Wuhan City. Duke's Kunshan University in China has postponed all classes until Feb. 17.

State health officials say the risk of coronavirus is "considered low at this time" in North Carolina.

"While people should take this new virus seriously, at this time of year, respiratory illnesses in people in North Carolina are most likely due to infection with influenza or viruses that cause the common cold," Dr. Elizabeth Cuervo Tilson, the state's chief medical officer, said in a written statement.

"People should take precautions to protect themselves and others from these infections," Tilson said, "including washing your hands frequently, covering your cough, avoiding close contact with people who are sick and making sure you have gotten your annual flu shot."
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EdwinSm, View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote EdwinSm, Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: February 04 2020 at 10:01pm
I have noticed in other outbreaks that the flow of information tends to dry up as the outbreak progresses, probably when the authorities feel that it would cause too much panic.

Quote State health officials say they will no longer announce when someone in North Carolina is being tested for the coronavirus, the deadly respiratory illness that flared up in China this month, unless and until the person has tested positive.


This is a bit earlier than I would have expected to start reducing the flow of information.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Penham Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: February 05 2020 at 9:55am
I live in Oklahoma and so far we have only had 2 tested and quarantined to their homes. They both ended up testing negative. They did release what city they lived in, how they possibly came in to contact, etc. But no names of course.
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