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Washington Coronavirus Patient Is Recovering After Receiving a Trial of an Experimental Antiviral Drug

The patient is still in the hospital, but all of his symptoms except a cough have resolved.

The first person in the Pacific Northwest, and the United States, to become infected with the Wuhan coronavirus is recovering in the hospital after receiving a possible new treatment.

The patient, a 35-year-old man, admitted himself to an urgent care clinic in Snohomish County, Washington on Jan. 19 after returning from a trip to Wuhan, according to a New England Journal of Medicine report on the case.

"The patient stated that he had seen a health alert from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) about the novel coronavirus outbreak in China and, because of his symptoms and recent travel, decided to see a health care provider," the report reads. "Given the patient's travel history, the local and state health departments were immediately notified."

After testing positive for the deadly coronavirus, the patient was admitted to an isolation unit at Providence Regional Medical Center. On his sixth day of hospitalization, according to the NEJM, "clinicians pursued compassionate use of an investigational antiviral therapy."

After treatment with the antiviral, Remdesivir, "the patient's clinical condition improved." The patient is still in the hospital, but all of his symptoms except a cough have resolved.

Remdesivir is made by the drug company Gilead Sciences. It is not yet licensed or approved but it is being tested as a coronavirus treatment.

So far, 259 people have died from the coronavirus and nearly 12,000 cases—including seven in the U.S.—have been confirmed. The U.S. government Friday declared a public health emergency over the coronavirus and starting Sunday, anyone flying to the U.S. who visited the Hubei province in the last 14 days will be subject to a 14-day quarantine.