A Berkeley resident has tested positive for the novel coronavirus, the first confirmed case in the city, health officials reported Tuesday.
The resident returned to Berkeley on Feb. 23 "from one of the growing number of countries with a COVID-19 outbreak," the city said in a statement, referring to the highly contagious disease. "Concerned about being exposed through travel, the resident largely stayed at home in a voluntary self-imposed quarantine."
The city did not immediately respond to a request for information about which country the patient had come from, when the diagnosis was made and where the patient is being treated.
"While the risk of infection remains low, the expanded presence of the virus in our community is a reality we should all prepare for," said Dr. Lisa Hernandez, Berkeley health officer. "There are steps that all of us in the community can take now to improve basic hygiene and also prepare for a wider spread in the future."
Berkeley public health officials are currently investigating whether the patient made contact with other people since returning to the U.S., the city said, adding that anyone potentially exposed will be notified and evaluated.