Medical workers outside Mechnikov North-Western State Medical University, where students have been place under quarantine, in St. Petersburg, Russia.

March 9 coronavirus news

By Jessie Yeung, Joshua Berlinger, Steve George, Tara John and Meg Wagner, CNN

Updated 10:14 p.m. ET, March 9, 2020
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2:40 p.m. ET, March 9, 2020

Colleges should consider canceling international student travel programs, US health officials say

From CNN’s Ben Tinker and Adam Levine

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention urged colleges and universities to considering canceling study abroad trips and other international travel for students.

Institutions of higher education "should consider asking current program participants to return to their home country," the center said in a statement, noting that "students may face unpredictable circumstances, travel restrictions, challenges in returning home or accessing health care while abroad.

Schools should work with public health officials to determine the best way to transport students home.

"All plans for returning study abroad students should be designed to protect participants from stigma and discrimination," the CDC said.

2:30 p.m. ET, March 9, 2020

Israel says anyone entering the country must self-quarantine for 14 days

From CNN’s Oren Liebermann

Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has announced that anyone entering the country from abroad  —Israeli citizens and foreign nationals alike — must self-quarantine for 14 days. 

Those foreign nationals who are unable to demonstrate to Israeli border authorities that they will be able to self-quarantine for two weeks will not be allowed to enter the country.

“This is a difficult decision, but it is necessary to protect public health — and the public health comes before everything,” Netanyahu said in a video statement on Monday. 

“This decision will be in effect for two weeks; at the same time, we are making decisions in order to protect the economy of Israel,” he added. 

2:28 p.m. ET, March 9, 2020

How do I know if I have a cold or coronavirus? 

Your questions, answered

The biggest challenge doctors are facing is telling the difference between a mild infection of coronavirus and a cold or mild flu, said Dr. Daniel Kuritzkes, chief of the Division of Infectious Diseases at Brigham and Women's Hospital.

"The symptoms of mild coronavirus infection are really no different than the symptoms of a cold or mild influenza," he said. "I think right now what we are saying is that the people we would be concerned about are those who are traveling to a country that's considered to be a high-risk country or who have been contact with somebody who has been diagnosed with coronavirus. That's one of the reasons we may be missing other people who don't fall into one of those categories and have very mild disease and the challenges that are until testing more widely available is going to be harder to catch every last case."

Since there is no vaccine for coronavirus, Kuritzkes said the best way to treat yourself, if you have mild symptoms, "is the same way you treat a cold."

4:49 p.m. ET, March 9, 2020

Louisiana reports first presumptive positive case of coronavirus

The Louisiana Department of Health has reported the state’s first presumptive positive case of coronavirus, according to a statement from Gov. John Bel Edwards’ office.

The Jefferson Parish resident has been hospitalized in Orleans Parish.

“While today is the first time that we can confirm that we have a presumptive positive coronavirus case, Louisiana has been preparing for this moment for many weeks,” Edwards said.

The governor will hold a news conference with public health officials later today.

2:13 p.m. ET, March 9, 2020

New Jersey has 5 new presumptive positive cases of coronavirus

From CNN's Sheena Jones

New Jersey has 5 new presumptive positive cases of coronavirus, Lt. Gov. Shelia Oliver said Monday afternoon.

The state now has a total of 11 positive cases, Oliver said.

One person was in contact with friends from Milan who did not have the virus, but he did test positive, Department of Health Commissioner Juditih Persichilli said during the same press conference.

At least 24 people are under investigation to be tested, Persichilli said.

2:09 p.m. ET, March 9, 2020

White House invites Wall Street executives for meeting on coronavirus

From CNN's Kevin Liptak 

The White House has invited Wall Street executives, including bank CEOs, to a meeting this week on coronavirus, according to an official familiar with the plans.

The meeting is likely to come later in the week, after President Trump's expected meeting on Monday with advisers to determine next steps on containing the economic fallout related to the virus.

The official declined to provide a list of expected attendees.

Trump administration officials have already convened meetings with airline, cruise, pharmaceutical and diagnostic testing CEOs to discuss the outbreak.

The Washington Post first reported the expected meeting.

2:04 p.m. ET, March 9, 2020

How do I self-quarantine?

Your questions, answered

Dr. Daniel Kuritzkes, chief of the Division of Infectious Diseases at Brigham and Women's Hospital, spoke to CNN on Monday and answered viewers' questions on coronavirus.

One of them was how to self-quarantine if you've been exposed to someone with the virus.

Here's what he suggested:

"That means taking taking responsibilities yourself and make sure you are not in contact with other people and risk spreading the virus to people who are not yet infected. For most people that means staying at home. Ideally having other people drop off things like food and other supplies for you but not venturing out of the house and to the extent possible within the household and keeping yourself separate from other members of the household and not to affect them."
2:03 p.m. ET, March 9, 2020

US health official says "many people" will be exposed to coronavirus

From CNN Health’s Michael Nedelman

A top official with the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said Monday she expects “many people” will be exposed to the novel coronavirus — but far fewer will become severely ill. 

“It’s fair to say that, as the trajectory of the outbreak continues, many people in the United States will at some point in time, either this year or next, be exposed to this virus. And there’s a good chance many will become sick,” Dr. Nancy Messonnier, director of CDC's National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases, told reporters today.

"But again, based on what we know about this virus, we do not expect most people to develop serious illness,” she added, citing figures from China suggesting roughly 80% of cases were mild. 

However, Messonnier said that risk starts to increase beginning at age 60, with those over 80 at highest risk of serious illness from the virus. 

"The people who are at greatest risk are those who are older, and who also have serious, long-term health conditions like diabetes, heart disease or lung disease,” she said.

In guidance released last week, the CDC encouraged those at higher risk to stock up on supplies, avoid crowds and “stay home as much as possible” if there’s an outbreak in your community. Still, Messonnier added today that there's no evidence of community transmission in most parts of the US.

"I would recommend that people make their own decisions based on an understanding of that risk,” she said. 

1:59 p.m. ET, March 9, 2020

New York City transit chief: "If you can get around without riding the subway, do it"

From CNN's Taylor Romine

The head of New York City's public transit system is advising anyone with health issues to avoid taking the subway, if they can.

Metropolitan Transit Authority Chairman and CEO Patrick Foye gave this advice to riders experiencing symptoms like fever or respiratory issues and those who have compromised immunity or other serious health issues:

"If you can get around without riding the subway, do it.”

At a news conference today, he insisted "the subways remain safe." 

"That being said, if you experience symptoms like fever or respiratory issues or have compromised immunity, or other serious health issues, it’s good advice always, to avoid large crowds," he added.

The authority's full fleet is being disinfected every 72 hours, Foye said. All stations and transit centers are being disinfected daily.