GA governor confirms 2 cases of coronavirus in Georgia

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(Associated Press)

ATLANTA, Ga. (WATE) — Georgia governor Brian Kemp and state public health officials confirmed Monday night the state’s first two COVID-19 coronavirus cases.

According to a news release from the Georgia Department of Public Health, the two cases involve residents of the same household in Fulton County. Both people have mild symptoms and they were being isolated at home with other relatives to keep the illness from spreading.

One of the patients had recently returned from Italy, the release stated.

Earlier Monday evening, Gov. Kemp spoke with U.S. Vice President Mike Pence about the two confirmed coronavirus cases, the news release stated, and the Governor’s Coronavirus Task Force was briefed via conference call at roughly 9:30 p.m. At 10 p.m.

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“We knew that Georgia would likely have confirmed cases of COVID-19, and we planned for it. The immediate risk of COVID-19 to the general public, however, remains low at this time,” said Kathleen E. Toomey, M.D., M.P.H, DPH commissioner. “I cannot emphasize enough the need for all Georgians to follow the simple precautions that DPH always urges to prevent the spread of respiratory viruses.”

COVID-19 spreads through the air when an infected person coughs or sneezes, health officials said. Symptoms appear within two to 14 days after exposure and include fever, cough, runny nose, and difficulty breathing.

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The state’s health department is working to identify any contacts who may have been exposed while the individuals were infectious. People who are identified as having been exposed will be contacted directly by a DPH epidemiologist and monitored for fever and respiratory symptoms, state officials said Monday night.

We’ll continue to follow any developments.

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