Western New Yorkers who traveled to Italy test negative for coronavirus

Mar 4, 2020

Coronavirus tests on members of two Western New York families have come back negative.

The families had recently traveled to a part of Italy where the virus is prevalent. Samples from a reported twelve individuals were tested at a laboratory in Albany. Erie County officials on Wednesday would not confirm the number of local residents being quarantined.

Six New Yorkers now have tested positive for COVID-19. Three family members and a neighbor of a positive Westchester County man are the latest to be confirmed. The first person in the state to test positive for coronavirus, a 39-year-old female healthcare worker who spent time in Iran, was said to be "getting better."

Gov. Andrew Cuomo also announced Wednesday that approximately 300 SUNY and CUNY students studying abroad in five countries—China, Italy, Japan, Iran and South Korea—are being brought home.

"The students will come back on a charted plane which will land in Stewart Airport. They will then be quarantined for 14 days in dormitory settings. We will then stay in touch with them after the 14 days to do follow-up work," Cuomo said, at a Wednesday morning news conference in Albany.

The University at Buffalo, in a statement, said it is recalling nine students; eight in Italy and one in South Korea.

“The health and safety of our students is of paramount importance to the university, whether they’re pursuing their education at our home campus or anywhere in the world,” said UB Provost A. Scott Weber, in a statement. “The university will take all steps necessary to ensure our students have the opportunity to complete their studies in accordance with the CDC’s guidelines.”

All campus-sponsored travel to impacted countries for the rest of the semester has been canceled.