Health and Science

CDC confirms first known employee infected with coronavirus

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) headquarters in Atlanta, Georgia.
Tami Chappell | Reuters

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said Monday an employee of the U.S. agency tested positive for the coronavirus, the first known employee with the respiratory disease.

The CDC said the employee was not involved in the agency's COVID-19 response efforts and has not been present in the CDC workplace since March 6. The patient is in good condition and is isolated to prevent the spread of the infection to others.

"CDC is considering and taking all necessary actions to further protect the health and safety of our workforce," the agency said in a statement. "Our best wishes go to the employee for a rapid and full recovery."

The news came moments after President Donald Trump said that the U.S. may be able to get the new coronavirus outbreak under control by July or August at the earliest.

Global coronavirus cases now exceed 174,000—Here's what experts advise the public to do now

The virus, which emerged from Wuhan, China, less than three months ago, has infected at least 4,138 people in the U.S. and killed at least 71, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University. 

On Sunday, the CDC urged people across the U.S. to cancel or postpone events with 50 or more attendees for the next eight weeks to try to contain the fast-moving coronavirus pandemic. The CDC said individuals and organizations should reschedule large events and gatherings of any size should be reconsidered unless organizers can protect vulnerable people, ensure proper hand hygiene and social distancing.