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First US evacuee infected with coronavirus was mistakenly released from hospital

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The Wuhan coronavirus has killed more than 1,000 people globally since the outbreak began, according to authorities. More than 40,000 have been infected. Since its outbreak in December, the Wuhan coronavirus has killed more people than the severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) outbreak.

Posted: Feb 11, 2020 5:00 AM
Updated: Feb 11, 2020 5:00 AM

The first US evacuee from China known to be infected with the Wuhan coronavirus was mistakenly released from a San Diego hospital after an initial test found the person had not been infected, local health officials said Monday.

The patient arrived in the US last week at Marine Corps Air Station Miramar on a State Department flight from Wuhan, China, and was hospitalized with three others after showing possible symptoms of the virus. After an initial CDC test showed all four patients did not have the novel coronavirus, they were released Sunday and returned to the 14-day federal quarantine at Miramar, the University of California, San Diego Health said in a statement.

"This morning, CDC officials advised San Diego Public Health that further testing revealed that one of the four patients tested positive for (novel coronavirus)," UC San Diego Health said in a statement. "The confirmed positive patient was returned to UC San Diego Health for observation and isolation until cleared by the CDC for release."

Another person at Miramar was also hospitalized on Monday afternoon and was being tested for the coronavirus. Both patients "are doing well and have minimal symptoms," UC San Diego Health said.

The San Diego case is the 13th to be confirmed in the US and the seventh in California. Eleven of these cases have been confirmed in people who recently traveled to Wuhan, China; the other two are instances of person-to-person transmission.

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