UTMB doctors address coronavirus concerns during town hall

GALVESTON, Texas (KTRK) -- With fear rising over the fast-spreading coronavirus, especially with at least five cases in the Houston area, UTMB doctors used a town hall Friday to address the virus.

The town hall included experts from the Galveston campus who provided updates on what they know about COVID-19, and how its world-class infectious disease scientists are studying it.

In addition, UTMB discussed how it is planning for the disease that the virus causes.

Back in January, ABC13 reported on UTMB's efforts to develop a vaccine to fight coronavirus through the Galveston National Laboratory.

"The lab's top priority is research to develop diagnostics, therapeutics and vaccines to combat the most dangerous diseases in the world," according to its website.

SEE MORE: UTMB doctors in Galveston working on coronavirus vaccine

So far, the worldwide death toll of novel coronavirus has surpassed 3,300 people, with the vast majority of those deaths in mainland China, where the virus is believed to have started. There are also around 100,000 cases globally.

In the U.S., 14 people have died of the virus. Many of the cases domestically are travel-related, including three of the five cases in the Houston area. Officials said those three cases involved members of a travel party to Egypt.
Where are the coronavirus cases in the U.S.?

6 Texas labs equipped to test coronavirus, Gov. Abbott says

Tackling Houston-area coronavirus myths
EMBED More News Videos

Do Houston hospitals test for COVID-19? Is SXSW cancelled? Should you go to the rodeo? It's time to address the coronavirus myths.

What Houston-area school districts, health departments are doing about coronavirus
EMBED More News Videos

ATTENTION PARENTS! Here's a list of Houston-area school districts on how they're protecting its students.

Follow Deborah Wrigley on Twitter and Facebook.
Copyright © 2021 KTRK-TV. All Rights Reserved.