WASHINGTON (NEXSTAR) ─ With the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) confirming four states have reported cases of the coronavirus, the nation’s top health officials are urging against Americans traveling to China, where the potentially deadly virus was first reported.
The coronavirus, which is believed to have originated in Wuhan, China, has killed more than 100 people in China alone. The country is also reporting more than 4,500 confirmed cases.
Secretary of the U.S. Health and Human Services Alex Azar said the CDC has reported five confirmed cases nationwide and 26 states are currently monitoring patients being tested for the illness.
Despite this, Azar said Americans shouldn’t worry since all national protocols are being followed.
“The playbook for responding to an infectious disease outbreak is relatively simple and multi-tiered,” Azar said. “You identify cases, isolate people, diagnose them and treat them.”
Last week, President Donald Trump and White House Deputy Press Secretary Hogan Gidley said Americans should rest assured that everything is under control.
“The president has been briefed and remains consistently vigilant in making sure that this doesn’t spread throughout our country,” Gidley said.
But there’s still growing concern on Capitol Hill about the potential spread of the deadly virus nationwide.
Sen. Edward Markey, D-Massachusetts, said he wants to see more preventative action and is calling for a White House global health chief to coordinate the nation’s response.
“President [Barack] Obama created a czar to deal with the Ebola crisis, thus far President Trump has not filled that position,” Markey said.
Markey believes a coordinated approach will be better for the country.