A New York City resident is now being tested for the coronavirus — after the person recently traveled to Italy, the city revealed Thursday.
The patient reported symptoms of the virus, but further details on their identity and timing of their travels and illness were unclear.
City Health Commissioner Oxiris Barbot said the number of tests will likely rise after the federal government recently broadened testing criteria in response to a more rapid spread of the deadly virus outside of China — in countries including Italy, Iran and South Korea.
“Viruses don’t respect borders and this broader definition will help us cast a wider net to detect the virus,” Barbot tweeted. “We expect the number of cases under investigation to grow.”
There have been no confirmed cases of the virus in the Big Apple yet. Six others have been tested, all returning negative results.
“We ask New Yorkers to continue to wash their hands regularly and stay home if they feel sick and have recently traveled or been in close contact with someone who has traveled to these or any countries with ongoing person-to-person spread of COVID-19,” Barbot said, using the name of the specific strain of the virus.
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