Ohio says new virus cases must be reported immediately

January 24, 2020 GMT

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Health care workers in Ohio will be required to immediately report to the state any cases of the dangerous new virus from China, the state’s health department said Friday.

So far, there have been just two U.S. patients diagnosed and none in Ohio.

“Anticipatory action like this is critical to ensuring that we are protecting Ohioans,” said Dr. Amy Acton, director of the state health department.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is expecting more Americans to be diagnosed with the newly discovered virus in coming days, as worldwide the number of confirmed cases has passed 800.

The virus can cause fever, coughing, wheezing and pneumonia. It is a member of the coronavirus family that’s a close cousin to the deadly SARS and MERS viruses that have caused outbreaks in the past.