The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said Monday that the number of 2019 novel Coronavirus cases in the United States rose from 34 on Friday to 53 as more passengers from the Diamond Princess cruise ship tested positive for the sickness.
The virus quickly spread among 695 passengers aboard the Carnival cruise ship docked in Yokohama, Japan, and has since killed at least two and forced many of the rest into quarantines and isolation. The U.S. State Department eventually repatriated those who wished to come home, though local officials across America have shown signs of resistance to housing the potentially infected in state or federal facilities.
COVID-19, as the virus is officially known, has infected more than 79,000 people in two dozen countries and killed at least 2,600. Businesses across the world have responded by cancelling conferences and restricting travel, especially to China.
U.S. financial markets plunged Monday as the number of confirmed cases rose in South Korea, Italy, and Iran. Meanwhile, at least one man in Miami was facing a medical bill for up to thousands of dollars after a Coronavirus scare. He was ultimately diagnosed with the flu, but the case showed the potential for people with high-cost health plans to rack up fees as panic spreads in a country without universal healthcare.
Even as the Petri dish of the Diamond Princess and the surge in cases in Europe and the Middle East have captured the worlds attention, the vast majority of cases remain in China, where the virus was first documented in December.