Over the past 3 weeks, as word of an unusual cluster of pneumonia cases in Wuhan, China has morphed into a growing epidemic across China, the CDC has issued increasing stringent travel advisories – first for Wuhan City – then expanding to all of Hubei province.
- On January 6th the CDC Issued a Level 1 (Watch) Travel Notice For Unidentified Pneumonia – Wuhan, China
- On January 21st, we saw the CDC Elevate China Travel Advisory To Level 2 – Practice Enhanced Precautions.
- Four days ago (Jan 24th), the CDC Raised Wuhan Travel Advisory to Warning – Level 3
- CDC recommends that travelers avoid all nonessential travel to China.
- There is an ongoing outbreak of respiratory illness caused by a novel (new) coronavirus that can be spread from person to person.
- Chinese officials have closed transport within and out of Wuhan and other cities in Hubei province, including buses, subways, trains, and the international airport. Other locations may be affected.
- Older adults and people with underlying health conditions may be at increased risk for severe disease.
- The situation is evolving. This notice will be updated as more information becomes available.
What is the current situation?
- CDC recommends that travelers avoid all nonessential travel to China. In response to an outbreak of respiratory illness, Chinese officials have closed transport within and out of Wuhan and other cities in Hubei province, including buses, subways, trains, and the international airport. Additional restrictions and cancellations of events may occur.
- There is limited access to adequate medical care in affected areas.
A novel (new) coronavirus is causing an outbreak of respiratory illness that began in the city of Wuhan, Hubei Province, China. This outbreak began in early December 2019 and continues to grow. Initially, some patients were linked to the Wuhan South China Seafood City (also called the South China Seafood Wholesale Market and the Hua Nan Seafood Market).
Chinese health officials have reported thousands of cases in China and severe illness has been reported, including deaths. Cases have also been identified in travelers to other countries, including the United States. Person-to-person spread is occurring in China. The extent of person-to-person spread outside of China is unclear at this time.
Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses. There are several known coronaviruses that infect people and usually only cause mild respiratory disease, such as the common cold. However, at least two previously identified coronaviruses have caused severe disease — severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) coronavirus and Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) coronavirus.
Signs and symptoms of this illness include fever, cough, and difficulty breathing. This novel coronavirus has the potential to cause severe disease and death. Available information suggests that older adults and people with underlying health conditions or compromised immune systems may be at increased risk of severe disease.
In response to this outbreak, Chinese officials are screening travelers leaving some cities in China. Several countries and territories throughout the world are reported to have implemented health screening of travelers arriving from China.
On arrival to the United States, travelers from China may be asked questions to determine if they need to undergo health screening. Travelers with signs and symptoms of illness (fever, cough, or difficulty breathing) will have an additional health assessment.