As of Monday February 3, the death toll of the Coronavirus had risen to 362 and there were over 17,300 known cases around the world. The number of coronavirus deaths in China has now exceeded the severe acute respiratory syndrome epidemic in 2003. There have been eight confirmed cases in the United States, with Massachusetts announcing that a man returning from Wuhan, China had contracted the virus.
On January 31, 2020, President Trump declared a public health emergency, which became effective on February 2 at 5:00 p.m. As a result, U.S. citizens that have spent time in the Hubei Providence of China in the past fourteen days will be subject to mandatory quarantine should they return to the United States. On Saturday, the CDC released interim guidance to state and local health departments. The guidance may be found here. CDC also released a flowchart to identify and assess the coronavirus:
On Sunday, U.S. Department of Defense Secretary Mark Esper announced that the department will provide housing for up to 1,000 people that are quarantined after returning to the U.S. China is facing increasing scrutiny that it was more focused on secrecy than public health at the beginning of the coronavirus outbreak. The hospital China built within ten days is now admitting patients and a second 1,500 bed facility is expected to open this week. In an interview, the head of the World Health Organization’s Emergencies Program stated that it is not too late to contain the virus.
The Health Law Pulse will continue to provide updates as more is known about this public health crisis.