Hours after the World Health Organization (WHO) categorized the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak a pandemic, Tom Hanks announced that he tested positive for coronavirus, as did his wife Rita Wilson, while traveling abroad.
"Hello, folks. Rita and I are down here in Australia," Hanks began his post on Instagram on Wednesday evening. "We felt a bit tired, like we had colds, and some body aches. Rita had some chills that came and went. Slight fevers too. To play things right, as is needed in the world right now, we were tested for the Coronavirus, and were found to be positive."
According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), symptoms associated with COVID-19 include fever, cough, and shortness of breath and may appear anywhere from two to 14 days after exposure. As the Mayo Clinic explains, chills, muscle aches, and general weakness are some symptoms that come with a fever, as Wilson and Hanks experienced.
"Well, now. What to do next?" the 63-year-old award-winning actor continued. "The Medical Officials have protocols that must be followed. We Hanks’ will be tested, observed, and isolated for as long as public health and safety requires. Not much more to it than a one-day-at-a-time approach, no? We’ll keep the world posted and updated."
"Take care of yourselves!"
Fellow celebrities and fans quickly sent their love and well wishes to Hanks and Wilson, who've been married for over two decades, after sharing the news on social media. "Please take care," Reese Witherspoon commented on his Instagram post, while Jack Black wrote, "Sending love."
"Get well soon," Josh Gad commented. "We love you and your beautiful wife and need you back to full health!!"
According to WHO, most people who become infected with COVID-19 have experienced "mild illness." But for people who are ill, have pre-existing medical conditions, or are older, cases can be more severe and, sometimes, fatal.
As of March 11, there have been over 118,000 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and more than 4,290 deaths worldwide, according to data from WHO. The majority of cases have occurred in China, where the new virus was first discovered. Cases of COVID-19 have been reported in 113 countries. In Australia, there have been 126 confirmed cases and three deaths, according to the country's department of health.
Hanks has been in Australia filming a movie about Elvis Presley, according to The Guardian. After testing positive for the new coronavirus, he and Wilson are reportedly in isolation at the Gold Coast University Hospital for two weeks, according to The Australian.
On Wednesday evening, Wilson shared a similar message on her Instagram Story announcing that she and Hanks had tested positive for COVID-19 and asked others to "keep us in your prayers!"
If you think you’re showing symptoms of coronavirus, which include fever, shortness of breath, and cough, call your doctor before going to get tested. If you’re anxious about the virus’s spread in your community, visit the CDC for up-to-date information and resources, or seek out mental health support. You can find all of Romper’s parents + coronavirus coverage here, and Bustle’s constantly updated, general “what to know about coronavirus” here.