JOHNSON COUNTY KS (AP) — Kansas announced Thursday that three more residents have the new coronavirus, bringing the state's confirmed tally of COVID-19 cases to four.

The three men, ages 35 to 65, all attended a conference in Florida in February, but didn't show symptoms until they returned to Kansas, said Mary Beverly, interim director of the Johnson County Health Department. The men, who all live in Johnson County, are not hospitalized and are not seriously ill, she said.

The state's first case — a woman under 50 — also was reported in Johnson County earlier this month. Johnson County is the state's most populous county.

The announcement came hours after the University of Kansas, Kansas State University and Emporia State University joined colleges across the country in shifting classes online to mitigate the spread of the new coronavirus.

All three campuses are on spring break this week. The University of Kansas announced Wednesday and Kansas State and Emporia State said on Thursday that they would delay the start of classes that usually meet in-person until March 23, when the classes will be taught remotely. Kansas State and Emporia State said the remote classes would continue “until further notice," while the University of Kansas said they may continue for several weeks.

For most people, the new coronavirus causes only mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough. For some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness, including pneumonia.

The vast majority of people recover from the new virus. According to the World Health Organization, people with mild illness recover in about two weeks, while those with more severe illness may take three to six weeks to recover. In mainland China, where the virus first exploded, more than 80,000 people have been diagnosed and more than 58,000 have so far recovered.”

Kansas State urged students to remain at home, away from the regular campus, unless they can't return home due to travel restrictions.

“We are working to accommodate learning that typically takes place in laboratories and other in-person situations," Kansas State president Richard Myers said in a written statement. “Our success will depend on the creativity and resourcefulness of our students and faculty, in which we have great faith.

The Kansas Board of Regents, which governs the state’s public universities, voted Wednesday night to allow each school to make its own decision. None of the other campuses have made announcements.


The Associated Press receives support for health and science coverage from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute’s Department of Science Education. The AP is solely responsible for all content.

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