Maryland governor reports first three cases of coronavirus

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) — Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan declared a state of emergency on Thursday after health officials confirmed the state’s first three positive cases of the new coronavirus strain.

In a statement, Hogan said the cases were confirmed by the state’s Public Health Laboratory in Baltimore.

At a news conference later in the evening, Hogan said the patients are a married couple in their 70s and an unrelated woman in her 50s. All three live in Montgomery County near the nation’s capital, and are in isolation in their homes, officials said.

The governor said the patients contracted the virus while traveling overseas and are in good condition, but it wasn’t immediately disclosed where the three had traveled.

“This is serious, but this is what our state has been actively preparing for,” Hogan said at the news conference.

In his statement, Hogan encouraged residents not to panic, “but to take this seriously and to stay informed as we continue to provide updates.”