Three people considered at possible risk for coronavirus in Maryland do not have the disease, the state Department of Health reported on Monday, though a fourth case has been sent to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for testing.
At the same time, Gov. Lawrence J. Hogan Jr. (R), in his role as the head of the National Governors Association, attended a meeting led by Vice President Mike Pence, the coordinator of the federal government’s response to the disease, in the Situation Room at the White House.
Pence spoke to the nation’s other governors via conference call.
In addition to Pence, participants included Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar and Dr. Anne Schuchat, Centers for Disease Control & Prevention principal deputy director.
Hogan said the Trump administration plans to request more than $3 billion from Congress to combat the disease later this week.
“They realize that states are on the front line of response to this crisis,” Hogan told reporters Monday evening. “As in most emergency situations, they’ll be in a reimbursement mode for expenses for the states.”
The governor has asked the General Assembly for $10 million to prepare for the disease, which has now struck in 10 states.
“Nobody knows, at this point, exactly what those expenses are going to be, but it’s just in anticipation of the potential that the crisis could escalate and get much much worse. It’s being proactive,” he said.
Even with no confirmed cases in Maryland, Hogan said it’s essential that the state prepare itself. He met with Speaker Adrienne A. Jones (D-Baltimore County) on Monday to discuss the request. It was their first one-on-one meeting of the legislative session.
“I think everybody’s going to be on the same page,” the governor said of the funding. “We are hoping for the best but preparing for the worst.”
Hogan posted a series of messages and photos on Twitter following his meeting at the White House.
“On behalf of all my colleagues, I want to thank @POTUS for putting @VP in charge of the federal response,” he wrote. “It’s good to have a former governor running this coordinated response as state and local officials lead our preparedness efforts on the front lines. Though the public health threat in Maryland remains low, all levels of government are working diligently and in close coordination to prepare for all possible scenarios.”
The governor said it was “a big relief” to get the three negative test results and that the results of the fourth test could be back as early as Tuesday.
“The discussion was that we just all have to be prepared for the fact that we may be dealing with this in every state.”
The state is posting the latest information at health.maryland.gov/coronavirus
Residents can also call 2-1-1 for updates.