Illinois becomes first state to test for novel coronavirus

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FILE – This illustration provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in January 2020 shows the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV). Health officials hope to avoid stigma and error in naming the virus causing an international outbreak of respiratory illnesses. But some researchers say the current moniker, 2019 nCoV, which stands for 2019 novel coronavirus, probably won’t stick in the public’s mind. (CDC via AP, File)

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (WTVO) — The Illinois Department of Public Health announced on Tuesday that it is now able to conduct for the novel coronavirus, becoming the first state to be able to do in-state testing.

The IDPH says test results are typically available in 24 hours.

“The ability to do this testing will mean we will be able to detect any new cases of novel coronavirus earlier and prevent any possible spread,” said IDPH Assistant Director Evonda Thomas-Smith.  “We understand there is concern about this new virus, which is why having test results back quickly can help reduce some of those concerns.” 

In Illinois, two people have tested positive for the virus, named 2019-nCoV. The IDPH says 44 tests have come back negative.

2019-nCoV originated in Wuhan China and is responsible for a global outbreak. The death toll currently stands at 1,017 worldwide, with 42,708 confirmed cases in China and 393 more in 24 different countries.

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