Second Confirmed Coronavirus Case Near NYC
One day after the first confirmed case within the city, a second confirmed coronavirus case has been revealed in a Westchester County resident.
The second patient is identified as a man in his 50s who lives in Westchester but works in Manhattan, where he is also currently hospitalized. His condition is considered serious because he had a pre-existing respiratory issue before the coronavirus infection.
Although the first patient within NYC had recently traveled to Iran, where an outbreak of coronavirus is taking place, the second patient has only recently traveled to Miami, where no major outbreak has been observed. Florida did recently confirm its first two positive cases of coronavirus, although they are on the Gulf coast of Florida, near Tampa.
Currently, the Westchester man's source of exposure remains unknown. His family and close contacts are also undergoing testing and the CDC is investigating potential ways they may have contracted the disease and spread it unknowingly.
According to Westchester County officials, two of the man's children attend school in NYC, and some schools have been closed out of an abundance of caution. He attended religious services at Young Israel of New Rochelle synagogue, where services will be suspended and as many as 700 congregants and visitors may need to self-quarantine for up to 14 days.
The man's commute also involved taking Metro-North into Manhattan from New Rochelle, likely on the Harlem or New Haven lines. The Department of Health will be investigating his travels, but if any passengers who traveled along those lines recently begin to feel ill, they should seek medical evaluation to rule out possible exposure to coronavirus.
To combat potential spread of the disease within New York, the state Department of Financial Services has issued an emergency regulation that aims to prevent health insurers from passing on the cost of COVID-19 coronavirus testing to patients. If you begin to feel ill with flu-like symptoms, visit an urgent care clinic or hospital for a professional evaluation. The risk of contracting the new coronavirus is very low, but proper testing is necessary to evaluate whether you have the common flu or the new coronavirus.
To prevent possible spread of disease on public transportation, this week the MTA also began implementing increased disinfection processes system-wide for buses, subway cars, and stations. Surfaces like seats, benches, subway poles, and turnstiles will be disinfected with a bleach solution, so you may smell bleach on more subway rides while the virus remains a threat.