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Coronavirus map: Tracking the spread in the US and around the world

ABC News logo ABC News 3/24/2020
This handout illustration image taken with a scanning electron microscope shows SARS-CoV-2 (yellow)also known as 2019-nCoV, the virus that causes COVID-19isolated emerging from the surface of cells (blue/pink) cultured in the lab. © Handout/National Institutes of Health/AFP via GettY Images This handout illustration image taken with a scanning electron microscope shows SARS-CoV-2 (yellow)also known as 2019-nCoV, the virus that causes COVID-19isolated emerging from the surface of cells (blue/pink) cultured in the lab.

By Tuesday, the novel coronavirus outbreak in the United States had grown to at least 46,481 cases in all 50 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. There are outbreak clusters in New York, Washington State and California, according to Johns Hopkins University, which is tracking reports and confirming them with local health departments.

The number of cases in the U.S. and worldwide is the subject of some debate, as testing has been rolled out unevenly and the criteria for diagnosis (through clinical means or a lab test) has varied from country-to-country.

a close up of text on a white background: US Coronavirus Cases © ABC News, Johns Hopkins CSSE US Coronavirus Cases

For more information on COVID-19 cases in your state, check your state's health department website, listed below. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention maintains nationwide statistics, but they are not updated as frequently. Information from Johns Hopkins University is not independently verified by ABC News.

The growing number of lab-confirmed cases in the U.S. at this point still pales in comparison to the seasonal flu, which kills an estimated 12,000 to 61,000 people per year and affects between 9 million and 45 million people in the country, according to the CDC.

Still, experts warn that the COVID-19 shouldn't be downplayed or compared to a bad case of the flu. Instead, the respiratory disease is more akin to severe pneumonia, and in serious cases, patients experiencing difficulty breathing have been hospitalized and put on ventilators.

What is unknown is how deadly coronavirus, which has no treatment at this point, is compared to the flu or how serious its effects are for those who are sickened but do not die.

MORE: Simple answers to common questions about coronavirus

Of those cases in the U.S. (pictured above), at least 48 were diagnosed in individuals who were repatriated to the United States on government charter flights from Wuhan, China, and from the Diamond Princess cruise ship. But many others are cases of unknown origin, or potential community spread, where there is no known nexus to travel.

a screenshot of a map: Cumulative Coronavirus Cases in U.S © ABC News, Johns Hopkins CSSE Cumulative Coronavirus Cases in U.S

Tracking novel coronavirus worldwide

Meanwhile, the virus, officially known as COVID-19, has spread to dozens of countries in regions around the world.

MORE: Coronavirus live updates: American tourist becomes 1st confirmed case in Bhutan

The novel coronavirus outbreak began in Wuhan, China, in late December, and has since sickened at least 392,780 people worldwide, including at least 46,481 in the United States, and killed thousands, primarily in mainland China, Italy and Spain, according to data from Johns Hopkins. A least 102,980 people have already recovered, JHU said.

a close up of a map: countries and territories with confirmed cases © ABC News, Johns Hopkins CSSE countries and territories with confirmed cases a screenshot of a cell phone: COVID-19 GLOBAL SPREAD © ABC News COVID-19 GLOBAL SPREAD

Check your state's health department for the latest COVID-19 cases

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