ATLANTA, Ga. (CBS46) – The Georgia Department of Public Health confirmed Tuesday that approximately 200 people in Georgia are self-monitoring for symptoms of the new coronavirus, COVID-19.

These individuals recently returned from China and are self-monitoring for symptoms of the virus from home. The DPH said they are showing no symptoms and there are no Georgia travelers who have returned from Wuhan or Hubei Province requiring quarantine.

DPH epidemiologists contacted the individuals by phone to establish a plan for self-monitoring and gave them instructions on how to contact the agency before they seek health care if they develop fever, cough or shortness of breath.

President Trump issued a federal proclamation in January that included a travel ban for non-U.S. citizens entering the country from China and funneling flights from China to one of 11 airports in the U.S., including Atlanta Hartsfield Jackson International Airport.

In addition, the proclamation requires mandatory 14-day quarantine for returning travelers who have been in the Hubei Province and 14 days of supervised self-monitoring for returning travelers from anywhere else in China.

The CDC said the overall risk of coronavirus to the general public is low, but this is the best way to prevent any respiratory virus:

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cough or sneeze into your elbow or use a tissue to cover it, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.

The flu still poses a greater risk and is widespread in Georgia, according to the CDC. The agency said it’s not too late to get a flu shot as it is the best prevention against the illness.

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