Dr. Marc Siegel: No need to panic about coronavirus in US

Americans have no reason to panic over the coronavirus, Fox News medical correspondent Dr. Marc Siegel said Saturday.

“People are walking down the street with masks about a virus that literally only has infected 12 people” in the United States, he said.

Siegel, appearing on “Fox & Friends: Weekend,” said Chinese misinformation and secrecy has made the virus harder to control, but the United States has done a great job in helping to control the spread and treat infected people.

FIRST AMERICAN DIES OF CORONAVIRUS IN CHINA: US EMBASSY

While the risk of infection in America right now is “very, very, very, low,” he said China’s failure to stem the outbreak is causing a  “greater risk to the world.”

The fast-spreading virus has killed more than 700 people and infected more than 34,500 in China as of Friday. According to the World Health Organization, 72 countries have implemented travel restrictions.

Siegel told the “Fox & Friends” hosts that Chinese officials are still suppressing information about the full extent of the epidemic in that country.

“I believe there [are] well over 34,000 cases — probably closer to 100,000,” he said.

So far, 12 patients have been diagnosed with the virus in the U.S. and a 60-year-old  diagnosed with the virus in Wuhan, China — the epicenter of the outbreak — has reportedly become the first U.S. citizen to die.

The virus first occurred in a Washington state man who has since been released from the hospital. Six other cases have been confirmed in California, as well as one each in Wisconsin, Arizona and Massachusetts, and two in Illinois.

In addition, more than 800 Americans were evacuated from Wuhan this week. All evacuees will spend 14 days under quarantine on military bases before being released.

American officials said Friday the U.S was prepared to spend up to $100 million to assist China and other nations in fighting the outbreak. The offer remains on the table, said Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar.

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“I think we’re going to see a worldwide pandemic from this. I don’t think we are going to see anything here of the level of what is happening there, though,” Siegel said.

“We have to get boots on the ground, though, over in China, which hasn’t happened yet,” he said.

Fox News’ Brie Stimson, Louis Casiano, and The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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