There are still no confirmed cases of novel coronavirus in New York state.
Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo said Friday that samples from 22 New Yorkers have been sent to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for testing. Of those, 16 have come back negative. Two samples from New York City and four samples from New York state outside of New York City are pending, for six total pending samples.
Dr. Howard Zucker, commissioner of health for New York state, adds that the risk in the state is very low.
"The department is in daily communications, often several times a day, with our colleagues at the CDC, HHS and New York City office of the Department of Health, the Port Authority and local health departments and health care providers statewide," Zucker said. "And together, we are closely monitoring the developments in China as well as here in the United States."
There are 12 cases nationally and our focus continues on aggressively identifying any new potential for exposures among travelers returning to New York, Zucker added.
"Now regarding travel, there have been several reports regarding a cruise ship that is docked in Bayonne, New Jersey. What we can tell you is that we understand four individuals have been taken to University Hospital in Newark for observation. But none of the individuals were experiencing symptoms consistent with novel coronavirus," he said.
Cuomo also noted that the number of state flu cases continue to rise and urged all New Yorkers to take recommended precautions as we approach the peak of flu season.
"We went through this before: Zika virus, Ebola, et cetera. But let's have some connection to the reality of the situation," he said. "Catching the flu right now is a much greater risk than anything that has anything to do with coronavirus."
Zucker said the flu has not yet peaked in New York.
"According to the latest surveillance report last week alone, 1,889 New Yorkers were hospitalized with lab confirmed influenza. In that same week 17,321 lab confirmed flu cases were reported. That's a 15 percent increase from the week prior and one of the highest single weeks of activity we have seen," he said. "There have also been 13,463 hospitalizations this season since around October."