“This is kind of a new, different kind of Coronavirus,” 3 people tested for virus in Michigan

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LANSING, Mich. (WLNS)– There are three people in Michigan now being tested for the deadly Novel Coronavirus.

Two people from Washtenaw County and one person from Macomb County are being tested.

The outbreak started in Wuhan, China. There are now 1,287 confirmed cases and 41 deaths in China.

In the United States, there are two confirmed cases, one in Illinois and the other is in Washington state.

“Coronaviruses in general aren’t necessarily rare. But again, remember, this is a novel one. This is like all the sudden this is kind of a new, different kind of corona virus from what we’ve seen. And so generally when you see novel viruses like that to ramp up the testing capacity, you know, broadly it is more challenging,” said health officer at the Ingham County Health Department, Linda Vail.

The three people in Michigan did recently travel to China.

“They meet the case definition, they traveled to Wuhan, they are experiencing symptoms like the respiratory symptoms that the CDC has outlined, so the CDC will be testing those specimens, and then sending us back the results,” said Public Information Officer at the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services, Lynn Sutfin.

The only approved testing for this virus is at the CDC.

“We’re so early on in this that our state laboratories don’t have the capacity to do the testing, it’s going to the CDC,” said Vail.

Even with only three possible cases in Michigan, health professionals say it’s important to be aware of how easily these viruses can spread.

“We live in a global society now, diseases that are occurring in other countries because get on planes and fly around and all that sorts of stuff and be aware of what those symptoms are,” said Vail.

Symptoms are similar to a respiratory illness and is very similar to a cold, according to Vail.

“The CDC has not noted anything in particular that people need to do other than the things you do everyday to prevent getting sick,” said Sutfin.

Sutfin added that the CDC will send back the results of those specimen from the three possible cases, which will confirm if there are Novel Coronavirus cases in Michigan.

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