Spread of coronavirus prompts CDC to expand 'enhanced health screenings' to 2 more US airports

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announced it will expand health entry screenings to Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport and O’Hare International Airport in Chicago, as the U.S. on Tuesday reported its first case of the potentially deadly coronavirus.

The CDC and U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) had previously announced the implementation of “enhanced health screenings” for airline passengers arriving from or traveling through the Wuhan province of China amid a mysterious viral outbreak in the region.

Screenings began Friday at three major air hubs: San Francisco International Airport (SFO), John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) in New York and Los Angeles International Airport (LAX).

The CDC announced the expansion through its website.

The CDC announced that they will be expanding public health entry screenings to Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport and O’Hare International Airport in Chicago.

The CDC announced that they will be expanding public health entry screenings to Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport and O’Hare International Airport in Chicago. (iStock)

HUMAN-TO-HUMAN TRANSMISSION OF CORONAVIRUS IN CHINA CONFIRMED

At least one person in the United States is infected with the mysterious pneumonia-like virus that has already killed at least six people and sickened some 300 others since the illness was first reported in Wuhan.

The case of the new coronavirus was confirmed in a man in Seattle. The man arrived in the U.S. last week before CDC and CBP officials had announced the “enhanced health screenings.”

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The patient, who was not identified, is a resident of the U.S. and is in stable condition, CDC officials said during a news conference on Tuesday. The patient is isolated at the hospital he is being treated at and poses "very little risk" to medical staff and the public, officials said.

The man was reportedly aware of the outbreak affecting Wuhan before falling ill and proactively reached out to state health officials when he began experiencing symptoms, which have been reported to include fever, cough and shortness of breath.

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The patient did not arrive on a direct flight from Wuhan, meaning people on more than one flight may have been exposed to the illness, which officials this week confirmed is transmissible between humans.

Officials are now working to determine who may be at risk, Dr. Scott Lindquist, the Washington State epidemiologist for communicable diseases, said during the news conference.

Fox News' Michael Bartiromo and Madeline Farber contributed to this report.

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