U.S. President Donald Trump says he'll unveil a plan on Tuesday (March 10) to shore up the American economy as the coronavirus has now spread to more than 30 states.
On Monday (March 9) the stock market plunged--and top health officials urged people to avoid cruise ships, air travel and big public gatherings.
Trump says his administration will work with Congress to help those whose livelihoods have been hard-hit by the virus.
(SOUNDBITE) (English) U.S. PRESIDENT DONALD DONALD TRUMP SAYING: "We're seeing the Senate, we're going to be meeting with House Republicans, Mitch McConnell, everybody, and discussing a possible payroll tax cut or relief, substantial, really very substantial relief." Vice President Mike Pence said the administration was also considering paid sick leave for workers, an idea that Democrats have already been advocating.
The urgent response comes as the number of confirmed cases has climbed rapidly and caused further widespread panic.
There were over 600 cases in the U.S. as of Monday (March 9), according to Johns Hopkins University.
Trump, who often points to the stock market as a gauge of his party's success, has criticized Democrats and the media for hyping the situation.
Meanwhile, four Republican lawmakers announced that they would self-quarantine after coming in contact with a conservative political conference attendee who later tested positive for the virus.
One of them, Representative Matt Gaetz, traveled with President Trump on Monday.
Trump and Pence had also attended the conference.
Pence told reporters that he had not been tested for the virus yet, and The White House said Trump had not been tested either.
But White House officials also said there was no sign that they came into contact with the infected attendee.