Feb. 29 (UPI) -- The Trump administration announced expanded travel restrictions Saturday in response to the spread of novel coronavirus.
Speaking at a White House press briefing alongside President Donald Trump, Vice President Mike Pence said the administration was expanding an existing restriction on travel to and from Iran to include "any foreign national who has visited Iran in the last 14 days."
The president and other administration officials who spoke at the briefing extended their condolences to the patient's family.
Trump also said the government was contracting with 3M to manufacture 43 million more surgical masks. He said it wasn't necessary for most healthy individuals to purchase masks and that the increase in production will ensure a supply for patients and medical professionals.
"We will respectfully ask the media and the politicians involved not to incite a panic because there's no reason to panic at all. This is being handled by professionals," Trump said.
Trump cited travel restrictions from China as the reason the number of cases -- 22 -- is low.
He also denied having called coronavirus a hoax, saying he meant Democrats were politicizing the outbreak.
Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, also said he had not been "muzzled" by the administration, but instead said Pence had advised him not to appear on some talk shows until the federal task force assembled this week had had a chance to "regroup."
Fauci said most individuals who contract the virus will recover, unless they are elderly or medically fragile, and that cases like that of a 40-year-old Chinese doctor who died earlier in February are outliers.