The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention warned on Tuesday that in the event of a global coronavirus pandemic, workers may have to telecommute and students may have to switch to internet-based schooling until the threat of disease has passed.
The bureau said that schools might also consider sub-dividing classes into small groups to avoid the potential for spreading the disease in crowded classrooms. Hospitals, as well, need to "begin preparing" for a potentially devastating outbreak of the disease.
Health officials in the United States say just 53 cases of the illness have appeared stateside. Just two of them were spread person-to-person on American soil. Most infections came from repatriated passengers from the quarantined Diamond Cruise ocean liner. Others picked up the disease while traveling overseas.