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Officials confirm 'presumptive positive' coronavirus case in Arizona, the state's second

Posted at 10:33 AM, Mar 03, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-03 13:33:50-05

PHOENIX — According to the Arizona Department of Health Services, one person has tested as "presumptive positive" for COVID-19, better known as coronavirus.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has yet to confirm the diagnosis.

As of Tuesday morning, Arizona had seen one confirmed case of COVID-19. That case involved an Arizona State student or faculty member, who was diagnosed with the virus in January after returning from travel to Wuhan, China. That patient was released from isolation in late February and is now fully recovered, according to a statement from the school.

The Maricopa County Department of Public Health (MCDPH) says the new case involves a Maricopa County man in his twenties who has "known contact of a presumed positive case outside of Arizona, who had traveled to an area with community spread of COVID-19." He is not hospitalized and is recovering at home, officials say.

"The ADHS State Public Health Lab began testing for COVID-19 on March 2 and was able to detect this positive case on its first day of testing, the same day that MCDPH requested that this individual be tested," MCDPH said in a press release.

Officials have interviewed close contacts of the patient and recommended that they monitor for symptoms and quarantine themselves for 14 days based on the risk of exposure.

"As far as risk to the public, we are still doing the case investigation of this individual, however, because we know when and where this individual was exposed, this does not represent community spread," said Dr. Rebecca Sunenshine, the MCDPH's medical director for disease control.

According to the CDC, "a presumptive positive case has tested positive by a public health laboratory and is pending confirmatory testing at CDC. States are reporting presumptive positive cases independently."

So far, 32 people in Arizona have been tested. Six other test results are pending, and 24 have been ruled out.

One hundred seven cases of COVID-19 have been confirmed throughout the United States, as of early Tuesday afternoon.

See a map of confirmed cases across the U.S. embedded below.

This story was originally published by KNXV in Phoenix.