20 coronavirus cases in LA County, health officials announce

Public Health officials in Los Angeles County Tuesday confirmed an additional case of novel coronavirus (COVID-19) in the county, bring the overall total to 20. 

The additional patient is a resident who returned from Iran and was taken to a hospital directly from Los Angeles International Airport, according to county health director Dr. Barbara Ferrer.

The resident is currently at home and in isolation, Ferrer told reporters Tuesday.

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Breakdown of confirmed cases in the county:

• Eight people in the travel group to Italy
• Two contract employees who were conducting coronavirus medical screenings of arriving passengers at Los Angeles International Airport
• Two relatives of a person who lives outside the county and was also confirmed with the virus
• A traveler from the area of Wuhan, China, the epicenter of the coronavirus outbreak. That person, the county's first, has since recovered
• A resident who recently returned from attending the AIPAC Conference in Washington, D.C., where there was a known exposure to a person who was positive for the virus
• A resident who recently traveled to Japan
One case of unknown origin
Three residents in the city of Long Beach. Two of which traveled internationally and one who traveled domestically, all to areas with known community transmission
• A resident who recently returned from Iran

Symptoms of COVID-19 include fever, cough and shortness of breath. Anyone who experiences these symptoms should call their healthcare provider or local public health department first before seeking medical care so that appropriate precautions can be taken.

Public health officials recommended that people with underlying health conditions, pregnant women and people who are elderly adopt some "social distancing" practices immediately. This includes avoiding non-essential travel, avoiding public gatherings and avoiding event venues.

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Although officials with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are urging residents to be prepared, they say you're still more likely to contract the flu than coronavirus.

The best ways to prevent the spread of respiratory infections, including novel coronavirus, are:

• Stay home if you are sick. Sick people make well people sick.
• If you have mild symptoms, there may be no need to go to a medical facility to see a doctor.
• Certain patients, such as the elderly, those that are immune-compromised or have underlying health conditions should call their doctor earlier.
• If you have questions, please call the clinic or your doctor before going in. If you do not have a healthcare provider, call 211 for assistance finding support near you.
• Wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
• Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
• Get immunized against the flu to protect yourself and your family, and reduce the potential strain on the healthcare system, which may be impacted by COVID-19 concerns.

The CDC does not recommend people who are well to wear facemasks.