WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Bob Menendez, the ranking member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and a senior member of the Senate Finance Committee that sets national health policy, cohosted an all-Senators briefing today with top Trump Administration health officials regarding the novel coronavirus outbreak that was first detected in Wuhan, China. A patient treated at Hackensack University Medical Center last night was evaluated for a possible coronavirus infection, but tests concluded that she did not have the disease. There have been at least two dozen fatalities from the infection worldwide.

“Earlier today, I cohosted a full Senate briefing from Trump Administration official on their response to the outbreak of Novel Coronavirus. I continue to closely monitor the situation and am in close communication with the United States government on actions and precautions needed to avoid further spread of this virus,” said Sen. Menendez. “In the briefing, I again called upon the CDC to include Newark Liberty among the major U.S. airports getting stepped-up screening. The safety of New Jerseyans and all American citizens here at home, as well as in China and other affected countries, is my first priority. The Chinese government has taken steps to share information with international health experts, and we encourage their cooperation and transparency as this situation unfolds.”

Earlier this week, Sens. Menendez and Cory Booker sent a letter to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to include Newark Liberty International Airport in the agency’s increased screening protocol for passengers traveling on direct flights from Wuhan. Newark Liberty is the nation’s fifth busiest airport.