As hospitals and health systems raise concerns over possible shortages of personal protective equipment, including respirators, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention continues to update its guidance and provide strategies that health care providers can use during the novel coronavirus (2019-nCov) outbreak now and in the event of a shortage of N95 respirators.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has confirmed two new U.S. cases of novel coronavirus (COVID-19), bringing the total to 15. Both individuals returned to the U.S. Feb. 7 on a State Department flight from Hubei Province, China, and were in federal quarantine at JBSA-Lackland base in Texas.

CDC expects more COVID-19 cases in the U.S., including among the more than 600 individuals who recently returned from Wuhan, the outbreak’s epicenter. Nancy Messonnier, M.D., director of CDC’s National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases, said yesterday that more than 30,000 passengers entering the U.S. from China have been screened for the virus.

After several days of case declines in China, the World Health Organization today said COVID-19 cases increased significantly because of “a change in how cases are diagnosed and reported.”

“In Hubei province only, a trained medical professional can now classify a suspected case of COVID-19 as a clinically-confirmed case on the basis of chest imaging, rather than a laboratory confirmation,” said Michael Ryan, executive director of WHO Health Emergencies Programme.

As of today, WHO reported 46,997 confirmed cases, the majority in China. 

For the latest information and resources, visit AHA’s coronavirus webpage.

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