Wisconsin confirms first case of new coronavirus

Published: Feb. 5, 2020 at 1:20 PM CST
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Updated with new information that the patient traveled to Beijing and went from Madison's airport straight to a hospital to be tested.

A Wisconsin resident is being treated for a new virus that originated in China and spread across the world -- the first case in Wisconsin and the 12th in the United States, health officials said Wednesday.

State health officials say the patient is an adult with a history of traveling to Beijing. Madison Mayor Satya Rhodes-Conway said Wednesday the person went straight from the Madison airport to the University of Wisconsin Hospital emergency room where they were tested for the virus and sent home.

They are isolated at home and "doing well," according to a statement from health officials, who are not divulging the patient's hometown, their age or other details, citing patient privacy.

More details about the person’s location may come from the local health department, said Dr. Ryan Westergaard, chief medical officer in the Department of Health Services Bureau of Communicable Disease.

to follow updates on outbreaks in Wisconsin.

The person was never hospitalized but was evaluated and tested at the University of Wisconsin Hospital in Madison, Westergaard said.

The person who tested positive came in contact with a confirmed case while traveling to mainland China within the past two weeks, he said.

“The risk to Wisconsin residents in general is extremely low,” he said.

The outbreak of the new type of coronavirus has infected more than 24,500 globally, with all but a couple hundred of those in China. There have been 490 deaths in China but none in the U.S. Other cases of the new pneumonia-like virus include six in California, one in Massachusetts, one in Washington state, one in Arizona and two in Chicago.