UPDATE 8:45 P.M.: On Saturday evening, the Georgia Department of Public Health released a statement that it “is awaiting confirmatory testing on a presumptive positive test for COVID-19 in a resident of Fulton County. Initial testing was completed today at the Georgia Public Health Laboratory (GPHL). The individual is hospitalized, and the source of the exposure is not known.”
Three Fulton residents have already tested positive for coronavirus.
DPH also stated that another case originally reported as being a Floyd County resident is actually a Polk County resident.
Meanwhile, the state agency reiterated: “The risk of COVID-19 to the general public remains low.”
Three new cases of coronavirus have been confirmed in Georgia, bringing the total number of cases in the state to five, health officials announced Saturday.
In a statement, the governor’s office said one case is in Cobb County, one is in Fulton, and the third is a 46-year-old northwest Georgia woman who preliminarily tested positive for the virus on Thursday evening.
» THE LATEST: Complete coverage of coronavirus in Georgia
The individual from Cobb was diagnosed following a recent trip to Italy and is isolated at home, authorities said.
The source of the Fulton County case has not been identified. That person and the woman from Floyd County remain hospitalized.
Additionally, authorities are waiting on the confirmation of a fourth new case in Gwinnett County, health officials said. That person recently returned from Italy and is also being isolated at home.
That brings the total number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in the state to five.
The first two cases were confirmed earlier this week when a Fulton County father and his 15-year-old son tested positive for the virus after the dad returned from a trip to Italy.
» MORE: Fulton County dad, son test positive for coronavirus after Italy trip
“Federal and state officials continue to work closely together to conduct testing and determine the extent of exposure for confirmed cases of COVID-19,” Gov. Brian Kemp said in a statement. “The risk to Georgians remains low. We ask Georgians to stay vigilant, utilize best practices to mitigate health risk, and remain calm.”
News of the additional cases comes on the heels of President Donald Trump’s visit to Atlanta and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Friday afternoon.
Shortly before boarding Air Force One, Trump signed an $8.3 billion emergency aid package for coronavirus response, which includes more than $3 billion for research and the development of test kits, treatments and vaccines.
State officials said they expect to see more diagnoses but that the risk for transmission here remains low. At the same time, officials at the CDC have said Americans should prepare for the possibility of significant disruptions in their daily lives.
In an effort to prevent the virus from spreading, several local churches have asked sick parishioners to remain home on Sunday.
In a post this week, the pastor of North Point Community Church in Alpharetta urged his congregation to “skip church” if they’ve been exposed to anyone with the coronavirus or the flu, or if they recently returned from a high-risk country.
“...Please take a couple of Sundays off,” he wrote. “We’re working hard to ensure our environments are clean and safe for you and your family.”
This story is developing and we’re working to learn more.
— Please return to AJC.com for updates
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