Outbreak Strikes Seattle Area as Testing Is Scrutinized

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    The epidemic continues to expand rapidly worldwide, topping 90,000 cases and 3,000 deaths. U.S. officials say virus testing kits will soon become widely available.

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    At a rally in Charlotte, N.C., President Trump said that his administration was taking “aggressive action” against the coronavirus.

    In South Korea, Iran, Italy, France, Germany and now the United States, health officials are trying to stem the growing coronavirus epidemic, tracing those who had come into contact with infected patients, even as they struggled to get a handle on how far the virus had spread.

    To date, American authorities have reported 100 cases nationwide, with six fatalities. But a genetic analysis of the virus in Washington State, where the deaths occurred, suggested that the illness could have been spreading within the community for as long as six weeks before the first case was detected.CASES IN THE U.S.We are tracking all confirmed coronavirus infections in the United States.

    The coronavirus, now present on every continent except Antarctica, has infected more than 90,000 people, killing more than 3,000.

    In China, where the epidemic erupted and where the overwhelming majority of cases have been identified, officials continue to get the spread under control. On Monday, China recorded 125 confirmed infections of the coronavirus and 31 deaths from the virus. It is the lowest number of officially confirmed infections since Jan. 20, when President Xi Jinping issued his first public orders on the epidemic.

    But in South Korea, site of the second-largest outbreak, the number rose on Monday to more than 4,800, nearly double the caseload on Friday. The rate of increase was even faster in Europe, where officials warned residents to prepare for large outbreaks.

    And in Iran, the scale of the largest outbreak in the Middle East remained unclear, with the government confirming 1,501 cases and public health experts expressing concern that the official numbers were unreliable.

    The first cases were also reported in Jordan, Senegal, Morocco and Saudi Arabia.

    As coronavirus cases show up around the globe, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development cut its outlook for 2020, suggesting that global growth could be cut in half if infections spread more widely outside China.

    Financial markets rebounded Monday, after a bruising week, on hopes that governments and central banks would act aggressively to counteract the economic blow of the epidemic.

    Source: NY TIMES

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