Virginia Bracing for Larger Coronavirus Impact After 9 People Test Positive

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Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam announced a ninth coronavirus case in the state Wednesday and said officials are preparing for additional people to be affected.

The latest patient lives in the Ashland area and was diagnosed after traveling internationally.

Virginia has not declared a state of emergency but Northam said he would do so if necessary. Lawmakers are set to vote Thursday on funding for the response.

"Together we can get through this, and we will," Northam said at a news conference in Richmond.

The state is making plans for state employees to potentially telework. School districts are being asked to report attendance data to the health department so any illness can be monitored.

The state health lab has enough coronavirus test kits for 300 to 400 patients as of Wednesday and is expected to have 500 to 600 kits soon. A representative said they requested the maximum number from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The patients include a U.S. Marine who is assigned to Fort Belvoir in Fairfax County and lives at Marine Corps Base Quantico in Prince William County, two Fairfax City residents, an Arlington resident, a Spotsylvania County resident in his 50s and a Loudoun County resident in their 40s.

The Marine "recently returned from overseas, where he was on official business," the Pentagon said in a statement. He started showing symptoms on Feb. 14 and returned to the U.S. several days later.

One of the Fairfax City residents to test positive is a man in his 80s who went on a Nile River cruise and began to develop symptoms on Feb. 28, officials said. He was hospitalized March 5. His spouse later tested positive.

The Arlington patient is in their 60s and "developed fever, cough and shortness of breath after having returned from international travel," the state health department said.

A Loudoun County resident in their 40s tested positive after "attending Christ Church Georgetown," the county announced. A rector and organist at the D.C. church previously tested positive.

"The positive test result is considered a presumptive positive, pending confirmatory testing by CDC. The patient is currently doing well and is isolated at home," the county said.

Additionally, health officials urged congregants and visitors to the Immanuel Chapel of the Virginia Theological Seminary to monitor themselves for symptoms after a D.C. resident with the virus spent time there.

The Commonwealth was monitoring dozens of people for coronavirus-related health concerns.

Officials urged residents to be careful about hand-washing

Stay with NBC Washington for more details on this developing story.

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