As coronavirus cases crop up across the United States, some governors and other leaders are scrambling to slow its spread, banning large public gatherings, enforcing quarantines and calling National Guard troops.
With new deaths reported and the number of confirmed U.S. cases top 1,000, lawmakers and health officials set up containment zones and quarantine areas and sought to limit contact with those who might be infected.
In Washington state, the governor was expected to ban gatherings of more than 250 people in virtually the entire Seattle metro area, home to some 4 million people. Schools and houses of worship were shuttered in a New York City suburb where a cluster of cases could be the largest in the nation, and the governor sent National Guard troops to help clean public spaces and deliver food.
The moves came as the battle to stop the virus from spreading intensified. More schools and universities, including UCLA, Yale and Stanford, have announced plans to send students home and move classes online.
The virus has infected more than 800 people in the U.S. and killed at least 30, with one state after another recording its first infections in quick succession.
For most people, the virus causes only mild or moderate symptoms such as fever and cough. For some, especially the elderly and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness, including pneumonia. Most people recover in a matter of weeks, as has happened with three-quarters of those infected in China.
For those in the middle of a quarantine, it’s an anxious time waiting for the threat to pass.
Judy Aqua, who’s in her 60s, is quarantining herself at home in New Rochelle, outside New York city, after possibly being exposed to someone with the virus.
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