Eighth case of COVID-19 coronavirus has been diagnosed in North Carolina

Transmission electron microscopic image of an isolate from the first U.S. case of COVID-19.The spherical viral particles, colorized blue, contain cross-sections through the viral genome, seen as black dots. [Image courtesy CDC]

State officials said another person from Wake County has tested positive for the COVID-19 novel coronavirus, bringing the total number of positive cases in North Carolina to eight.

The announcement comes as the state’s public and private universities are calling off in-person classes for the foreseeable future, and the Atlantic Coast Conference men’s basketball tournament in Greensboro will be played with no fans in attendance starting Thursday.

All of the state’s cases have been found in central North Carolina, seven in Wake County where the state capitol of Raleigh is located, and one in Chatham County southwest of the state capitol. In Virginia, health officials reported two positive cases in Virginia Beach, a couple who had traveled on a Nile River cruise. 

The  latest Wake County patient is reportedly doing well and is isolating at home. The case is related to a traveler from Indiana who last week visited Biogen, a company in Research Triangle Park.

The Wake County Public Health Division will work to identify close contacts, which the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention defines as being within approximately 6 feet of a person with a COVID-19 infection for a prolonged period of time of 10 minutes or longer.

Based on information provided by the individual, county health officials will assess risks of exposure, determine which if any additional measures are needed such as temperature and symptom checks, quarantine and/or testing.

The tests conducted by the North Carolina State Laboratory of Public Health are “presumptively positive” and will be confirmed by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention lab, according to a news release from the N.C. Department of Health and Human Services.

While awaiting confirmation of results from the CDC, the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services will treat presumptive cases as positive and follow CDC guidelines to protect public health and limit the spread of infection.

Because COVID-19 is most commonly spread through respiratory droplets, North Carolinians are being asked to take the same measures that health care providers recommend to prevent the spread of the flu and other viruses, including washing your hands, avoiding touching your face, staying home if you are sick and covering coughs and sneezes with your elbow.

It is important to make sure the information you are getting about COVID-19 is coming directly from reliable sources like the CDC and NCDHHS. For more information, please visit the CDC’s website at www.cdc.gov/coronavirus and NCDHHS’ website at ncdhhs.gov/coronavirus, which will also include future positive COVID-19 test results in North Carolina.

This story originally appeared on OBXToday.com. Read More local stories here.

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