Local hospitals making preparations for possibility of Coronavirus

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- Growing levels of concern as the number of confirmed Coronavirus cases continues to climb.

While no cases have been confirmed in the Central Valley just yet, local hospitals are getting ready.

"It's new," says Valley Children's Hospital Dr. Clint Pollack. "This is a brand new one that hasn't been experienced before and seems to cause more severe symptoms."

Doctors at Valley Children's say they're following recommendations provided by the state public health department.

They plan to ask patients and their parents whether they've recently traveled to China, where the virus is believed to have originated.

If the answer is yes, the patient would be quarantined and tested for the specific strain.

"We would put them in a private room, provide them with a surgical mask, contact our local health department and then perform testing for the 2019 novel Coronavirus," says Dr. Vivi Vijayan.

The Tulare County Public Health Department is also following recommendations from the state.

Doctors say there are several strains of the Coronavirus, and most of them often just cause a common cold.

The difference is this strain has never been seen in an animal or human, and there's no known treatment yet.

"There has been human-to-human transmission, but in the United States so far, there hasn't been human-to-human, so no one in the U.S. has caught it," Pollack said.

According to doctors, the symptoms are similar to a flu or cold, but those at risk are patients who have recently traveled to China or have had contact with somebody who has the virus.

Doctors advise folks to practice washing their hands, stay away from crowds or someone who is sick.
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