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DC news outlets ask reporters who covered CPAC to self-quarantine

DC news outlets ask reporters who covered CPAC to self-quarantine
© Greg Nash

Several Washington, D.C., news organizations, including The Washington Post, Politico and the Daily Beast, have asked reporters who covered the Conservative Political Action Conference to self-quarantine themselves after an attendee at the event tested positive for coronavirus.

"Out of an abundance of caution, we have asked Post employees who attended those conferences to self-quarantine for seven days (since the first seven days of possible incubation have passed)," a memo to staff from Washington Post Human Resources Vice President Wayne Connell reads. "Additionally, all public spaces in our DC headquarters are being thoroughly cleaned tonight (Sunday), including elevator cabs, buttons, and lobbies, stairwells, conference rooms, and tabletops on all floors. We will also continue supplying disinfecting wipes and hand sanitizer in conference rooms and other public spaces."

"If you are not feeling well, please stay home and let your manager know," Connell added.

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Politico echoed a similar sentiment in its memo to employees.

"Out of an abundance of caution, [the employees] have been asked to self-quarantine and work remotely for the duration of the incubation period. Self-quarantine of well individuals who may have been exposed is simply a precautionary measure that helps mitigate spread of the virus and is a step that we will continue moving forward," the Politico memo reads. "We understand that this news may be jarring, but it’s important to recognize that this was a large conference and that the risk of transmission for employees who were not in close contact with the infected individual is extraordinarily low."

The developments come after Rep. Paul GosarPaul Anthony GosarRepublican rips GOP lawmakers for voting by proxy from CPAC Rep. Gosar denounces 'white racism' after controversial appearance Texas attorney general hits links with Trump before CPAC appearance MORE (R-Ariz.) and Sen. Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward CruzGarland's AG nomination delayed by GOP roadblocks The Hill's 12:30 Report: Washington on high alert as QAnon theory marks March 4 The Memo: Is Trump mounting a comeback — or finally fading? MORE (R-Texas) both announced their respective self-quarantines on Sunday after coming into contact with the infected individual.

Public health officials have urged Americans to stay calm while taking measures to protect themselves with more cases expected in the country.

"You don’t want to alarm people, but given the spread we’ve seen anything is possible and that’s why we’ve got to be prepared to take whatever action is appropriate to contain and mitigate the outbreak," said Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, on "Fox News Sunday."

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U.S. Surgeon General Jerome Adams urged the public not to panic during an appearance on CNN on Sunday.

"Initially, we had a posture of containment so that we could give people time to prepare for where we are right now. We're shifting into a mitigation phase, which means that we're helping communities understand you're going to see more cases," he said. "Unfortunately, you're going to see more deaths, but that doesn't mean that we should panic."

More than 500 cases have been confirmed in the U.S., and 22 people have died from the virus, mostly in Washington state.

Vice Media also said on Monday that an employee in its "Brooklyn office may have been exposed to COVID-19" and its staff "has been sent to work from home."

— This report was updated at 3:22 p.m.