A Washington man who was the first in the United States to be diagnosed with the deadly Wuhan coronavirus is now being held in isolation, where he is treated mostly by a robot doctor equipped with a stethoscope.
As CNN reported, the man was diagnosed with the virus on Monday after having recently traveled to Wuhan, China. He arrived at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport on January 15, before health screenings were set up at U.S. airports in an effort to identify people who might be infected and stop the spread of the disease. After going to an urgent care clinic on January 19 and eventually being taken to Providence Regional Medical Center, the man was put in isolation where he has been in contact with only a limited number of medical workers.
In order to limit contact between the infected man and doctors, the hospital is making use of a robot that takes the man’s vitals and communicates with him through a large screen, hospital officials said.
Throughout the man’s treatment, hospital officials have been making efforts to keep him away from others and limit the spread of the coronavirus.
“He arrived at the hospital in a special isolated gurney called an ISOPOD and has been treated in a two-bed isolated area away from busy sections of the hospital, the doctor said.”
The report noted that the man, who has not been publicly identified but is said to be in his 30s, is now in a stable condition. The report added that health officials in Washington have reached out to 43 people who were called “close contacts” with the infected man, with state officials checking in on them daily to monitor for any possible symptoms.
Since the Washington man was diagnosed with the coronavirus, a second person inside the United States has been confirmed as having the disease, Fox News. The second case was reported in Chicago. The virus has claimed the lives of 56 people to date and sickened close to 2,000 others since it originated in Wuhan, the report added.
The virus has reportedly spread quickly, with new cases outside of China among people who had recently traveled to the city. Officials in Canada reported the first confirmed case on Saturday in a man who had traveled from Wuhan to Guangzhou, China, before traveling to Toronto late this week.
It was not clear yet when the infected man in Washington could be released from the hospital.