The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announced on Tuesday that it would no longer report on the number of persons under investigation (PUI) for suspected coronavirus, nor those that eventually test negative.
Dr. Nancy Messonnier, CDC’s director for the national center for immunization and respiratory diseases, also said in a telebriefing on Tuesday that the agency would be updating case counts on its website only once per day, meaning that states that report new cases after the CDC has already updated their website would not be reflected in the chart until the following day. Part of the reason, Messonnier said, is that the situation is rapidly evolving.
She urged people to begin checking with their local health departments as many states have begun testing on their own.
Hours after the briefing, during which Messonnier said there had been 6 deaths in the U.S. related to the coronavirus, health officials in Washington state updated their numbers to reflect 9 deaths in the state and 27 positive confirmed COVID-19 cases. As of Tuesday afternoon, the CDC's chart still reflected six deaths.
Washington state said an additional 231 people are under public health supervision.
Messonnier warned that officials in local communities may begin “taking specific actions to mitigate the disease” in an effort to prevent future spread and that the public’s cooperation would help expedite these processes.
One such action was the closing of a school in a New York suburb after a student’s father was revealed to be the state’s second confirmed case of COVID-19. Earlier in the day, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said the man was currently hospitalized and works as an attorney in Manhattan who commutes from his home in New Rochelle.
Cuomo said officials were working to investigate if the man used public transportation while infectious, and that he had not recently visited any countries currently experiencing a coronavirus outbreak.