COVID-19 is a type of animal coronavirus that can infect people and spread between people, similar to MERS-CoV and SARS-CoV. All three of these coronaviruses have their origins in bats. The sequences of the virus from U.S. patients are similar to the sequences from Chinese patients, suggesting a single, recent emergence of this virus from an animal reservoir. The epicenter of the outbreak occurred in Wuhan, Hubei Province China and was linked to a live animal market, suggesting an animal to human spread of the virus, which later became a person to person spread. Currently in the U.S. and other countries, there exists community spread of the virus, which means some people have been infected but don't know how or when they were exposed.