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Coronavirus outbreak: Santa Clara County declares local health emergency

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SANTA CLARA COUNTY, Calif. (KRON) — County officials have extended their declaration of a local health emergency in Santa Clara County due to the coronavirus outbreak.

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Officials stressed that this does not mean there is an increased risk to the public.

The declaration helps ensure that the county is prepared to respond effectively to the outbreak and allows them to receive mutual aid resources from the state of California and other jurisdictions.

A local health emergency was first declared on Feb. 3 in Santa Clara County.

On Monday, the County of Santa Clara Board of Supervisors was asked to ratify and extend the declaration for 30 days. 

The resolution was passed unanimously.

Two people have tested positive for the coronavirus in Santa Clara County, a county of about two million residents.

The two cases are not related and the county says there is no evidence that there is a person to person spread of the new virus in the county.

Both patients, a man and a woman, recently traveled to Wuhan, China and have stayed home since returning to the U.S. except to seek medical attention.

The first patient is a Santa Clara County resident who had returned home from China on January 24. He traveled through San Jose airport, officials said.

The county said he came into contact with “very few” people since returning to the U.S. from China and has been “self-isolating.”

The second infected person is a visitor of Santa Clara County and traveled through SFO on January 23 to visit family.

The woman has stayed home since she arrived and has been regularly monitored, with officials adding she has not been sick enough to be hospitalized.

Family members of the infected woman have also been quarantined.

Officials said at this time the risk to the general public remains low and everyone should continue to go about their regular activities and practice good health hygiene as it is the height of flu season.

If you have respiratory symptoms such as a cough, sore throat or fever, it’s advised you stay home, wash your hands thoroughly, and limit contact with others.

Santa Clara County borders San Benito County, where a husband and wife also tested positive for the coronavirus.

Officials said the husband recently traveled from Wuhan, China. The wife did not, making this a person-to-person transmission.

The new virus has infected more than 40,000 people globally and killed over 1,000, with the vast majority of cases in China.

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