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ASU President Crow says concern level over coronavirus at school is low

Dayana Henriquez and Daniel Oh wear medical masks Tuesday, Jan. 28, 2020, at Arizona State University days after a member of the school's community was diagnosed with a contagious virus following a trip to China. (KTAR News Photo/Griselda Zetino)

PHOENIX — Arizona State University President Michael Crow said concern over coronavirus at the school is low more than a week after a member of the community was diagnosed with the illness.

Crow told KTAR News 92.3 FM’s Gaydos and Chad on Monday that no additional cases of the illness have been reported since someone was diagnosed on Jan. 26 after returning from a trip to China.

It was the first reported case in Arizona.

“We’re not seeing lots of students showing symptoms and a lot of time has passed since we started class,” Crow said. “Our concern level isn’t high at the moment.”

Worry over coronavirus on campus grew last week, with some students wearing face masks as a precaution.

Several stores around the Tempe campus even sold out of the masks.

Crow said the school has been working to calm the fear of the illness, which saw the first person-to-person spread in the United States happen in Chicago on Thursday.

The illness came from Wuhan, China, and has killed more than 300 across the world.

Crow said more than 3,000 Chinese students attend ASU.

“Because this new virus happens to be emanating out of China, it creates anxiety of the unknown,” Crow said. “There’s just a general anxiety for humans when they encounter something new.”

Crow said that the school is in hourly contact with the Arizona Department of Health Services, monitoring for the possibility of more cases.

The school has also been in touch with anyone who may have come in contact with the individual with coronavirus, Crow said.

“We’re approaching this carefully and diligently, but at the moment we think things are under control,” Crow said.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

For all articles, information and updates on the coronavirus from KTAR News, visit ktar.com/coronavirus.

Arizona open and hiring: If you’re looking for job openings, visit ktar.com/arizonahiring.

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