(WSYR-TV) — How did coronavirus spread to every region of the country? New research points to New York City as the primary source of new infections as thousands of infected people traveled from the city and seeded outbreaks across America.
Using genetics, travel histories of infected people and models of the outbreak, here’s how coronavirus spread before NYC began social distancing.
In the Midwest, all of Iowa’s cases and nearly all of Ohio’s came from NYC.
In the South, all of Louisiana’s cases and most of Virginia’s cases have also been traced back to NYC.
Out West, Texas and Arizona can also trace most of their COVID-19 cases to NYC.
California and Oregon have more cases that spread from NYC than Washington State, which is closer.
In the Northeast, more than 90 percent of the COVID-19 cases in New York State, Massachusetts and New Jersey can be linked back to NYC.
Researchers at the Yale School of Public Health said the enormous growth of NYCs outbreak reflects the huge number of international travelers, mostly from Europe coming into the city’s airports.
Travel from Seattle — mostly from China — also seeded infections in more than a dozen states.
The researches said that NYC acted as the Grand Central Station for coronavirus, starting in early March, two weeks before stay-at-home orders were put in place.
Now that infections are dispersed around the country, travel from NYC is no longer a main factor.
As states around the nation begin to relax their restrictions, the findings demonstrate that it is difficult, if not impossible, to prevent those actions from affecting the rest of the nation.
As always, stay home and stay safe.