Philadelphia Health Department investigating possible coronavirus case; Montco athlete returns home from China

Tuesday, February 11, 2020
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PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- The Philadelphia Health Department has announced it is investigating one person in the city for coronavirus.

The department has not released any details about the latest potential case.

A few weeks ago, there was a similar investigation at William Penn Charter School, which turned out negative.

The Health Department says the risk of infection from the coronavirus still remains very low and only people who have recently traveled to China are at the highest risk.

In the meantime, on board the Diamond Princess cruise ship, the number of cases jumped today by 66. That total also includes 11 more Americans.

Officials are working to get them off the ship to local hospitals. They say it's not unexpected to see additional cases of coronavirus on board the Diamond Princess, saying passengers and crew may have been exposed before the quarantine.

There are now 135 cases, at least 20 Americans.

But it's all clear for the Royal Caribbean docked in Bayonne, New Jersey last week. The four passengers evaluated are negative for the virus.

Still, in China, where the outbreak started, the number infected continues to grow. President Xi met with health officials Monday as the death toll there now surpasses the SARS outbreak in 2002 to 2003.

In the meantime, Narberth-native Maggie Lucas is back home training at Primal Physical Therapy, but breathing a sigh of relief.

She plays for the Women's Chinese Basketball Association. The season now on hold due to the outbreak.

"It was a definite bummer but perspective-wise, just when I really started to figure out what was going on and I was hearing my family's fears about me being there, the most important thing for me was just getting home and being safe for the time being," she said.

Lucas tells Action News she got out just two days before transportation was shut down and before other Americans had to be evacuated by the state department.

"The only people in the Beijing airport were foreigners leaving the country and I've been in and out of the airport a couple times and every time it's packed, it's crazy in there. It was kind of eerie for sure," said Lucas.

She was told they'll try to re-start the season in March but that all depends on what happens with the outbreak.