A U.S. citizen with coronavirus was accidentally released from the hospital after initial tests were negative, according to health officials.
The patient, who has not been publicly identified, was evacuated on a State Department flight from Wuhan, China, to the Marine Corps Air Station Miramar in San Diego last week amid the growing spread of the virus. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention tested the patient and three others and all four tests came back negative, according to a statement from UC San Diego Health.
The four were all discharged from the hospital Sunday and taken into quarantine at Miranmar, where they were supposed to stay for 14 days.
But further testing showed that one of the four had actually tested positive and he or she was taken back to UC San Diego Health Monday “for observation and isolation.”
The university told the San Diego Union-Tribune that “all precautions” were taken when the patient was first released, including wearing a mask. Federal marshals were also wearing protection during the transfer to the quarantine facility.
It’s unclear exactly how many hours the patient was at the facility before being taken back to the hospital.
The patient is now the seventh confirmed case of coronavirus in California and the 13th in the United States, 11 of whom had recently traveled to Wuhan. Two others were infected by human-to-human transmission.
Another patient at the Miramar facility is also undergoing further testing for the virus.
“Both patients are doing well and have minimal symptoms,” health officials said.
As of Monday, more than 1,000 people have died from coronavirus, including 103 on Monday alone, and more than 42,000 have been infected.
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