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8th US coronavirus case confirmed in Boston

BOSTON — An eighth case of coronavirus in the United States has been confirmed in a Boston man in his 20s, health officials said Saturday.

The man recently returned from Wuhan, China, the epicenter of the outbreak, Boston and Massachusetts health officials said in a press release.

The man sought medical care soon after his return, according to the release, and he’s been isolated since then. His few close contacts have been identified and are being monitored for symptoms.

The Massachusetts Department of Public Health and the Boston Public Health Commission were notified late Friday by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention of the positive test results.

“Our priority is not only to protect and inform the residents of Boston but also to help this man continue to recover,” Boston Public Health Commission Executive Director Rita Nieves said. “We are pleased that he is doing well.”

Nieves said the risk to the general population “remains low.”

“And we continue to be confident we are in a good position to respond to this developing situation,” Nieves said.

This is the first case in Massachusetts. There are three confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus in California, one in Washington state, one in Arizona and two in Illinois. The second Illinois case is the first instance of person-to-person transmission in the United States.

Almost 12,000 cases have been confirmed worldwide, with more than 11,800 in China.

The US government on Friday declared the virus a public health emergency.

The CDC is the only lab in the United States that can confirm cases of the novel coronavirus. It said Friday there are 241 patients under investigation in 36 states. Among them, 114 had tested negative and 121 had results pending.

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