For a short period, there was a bit of a panic in the Northern Virginia area when a Reddit post detailed a student from George Mason University allegedly from Wuhan, China that wasn’t feeling well and refused to seek medical help. Of course, with the coronavirus spreading, this set off some alarm bells. It turned out to be unfounded and the post has since been deleted. Still, the situation is not good. What is true is that GMU does have a student dealing with symptoms of the disease and the test results are still pending. They stressed that this student lives off-campus and does not live in any of the residential halls (via WTOP):
A Maryland resident is undergoing testing for a possible case of coronavirus, the state’s Department of Health announced Monday evening. And, in Virginia, George Mason University has confirmed that one of its students is awaiting testing results after exhibiting symptoms of the virus.
The Maryland resident “is in good condition and is being monitored while awaiting test results, to be reported by the CDC laboratory,” the state’s Health Department said in a release Monday.
The department said the resident “met the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention criteria for testing” for the virus.
Earlier Monday, two out of three patients in Virginia who were under investigation for possibly being infected with the new coronavirus have tested negative, the Virginia Department of Health confirmed.
NEW: Health officials in Virginia are investigating three possible cases of coronavirus, including a George Mason University student returning from China who reportedly showed symptoms similar to those of the illness.https://t.co/ARrCO3AIeZ— WAMU 88.5 (@wamu885) January 27, 2020
The University is aware of reports regarding a Mason student returning from China who is exhibiting symptoms similar to those of the novel coronavirus you may have heard about in the news. Read More >> https://t.co/4Y36B84R2x— George Mason University (@GeorgeMasonU) January 26, 2020
Update on student with symptoms of coronavirus >> https://t.co/sfLm98zjZq— George Mason University (@GeorgeMasonU) January 27, 2020
They’re investigating a student at George Mason Univ https://t.co/O2vFxO6MwG— SUNNI (@SunniAndTheCity) January 27, 2020
— China now has more cases of coronavirus than it had of SARS— The New York Times (@nytimes) January 29, 2020
—A flight of over 200 Americans who were evacuated from Wuhan landed in Southern California Wednesday morning
—British Airways canceled all flights to and from Chinahttps://t.co/FgzWGl7FGY
There are now more cases of coronavirus than SARS. It’s prompted colleges in the D.C.-area to order all their students studying abroad in China to come home. Apple, Amazon, Facebook, and Microsoft shut down offices in their China locations and put a temporary hold on business travel unless it was absolutely necessary. Given that China is an authoritarian regime that heavily censors the flow of information, we have no clue how bad it is, but the measures taken by these companies is a sign that it’s probably worse than what’s being reported. There is no way in a quarantine area that encompasses nearly 50 million people that there are fewer than 200 deaths and 10,000 confirmed cases of infection (via NYT):
China said on Wednesday that 132 people had died from the virus, which is believed to have originated in the central city of Wuhan and is spreading across the country. The previous count, on Tuesday, was 106.
The number of confirmed cases increased to 5,974 on Wednesday, up from 4,515 on Tuesday, according to the National Health Commission.
Most of the confirmed cases have been in the central Chinese province of Hubei, where several cities, including Wuhan, the epicenter of the outbreak, have been placed under what amounts to a lockdown.
Oh, and did we forget to mention that 5 million people left Wuhan before it was locked down. Yeah, I’ll bet the mortgage that not every single one was healthy.