A Frenchman has been hospitalized after the country's first reported case of the coronavirus. The French health authority has issued a statement saying that they are looking for anyone that may have been in contact with the victim in order to prevent the SARS-related virus from further spreading.

The patient became sick after a nine-day trip to Dubai. He was hospitalized on April 23 in Valenciennes, northern France and was transferred to another hospital in Douai on April 29. He is currently being treated for respiratory issues and is receiving blood transfusions.

The World Health Organization (WHO) first noted the virus in September of 2012. Since then, there have been a number of outbreaks. The coronavirus has already infected 30 people in the Middle East and the number of causalities is on a steady rise, with a total of now 18.

Marisol Touraine, the Minister of Health and Social Affairs for the National Assembly of France, gave a press conference earlier today.

"I immediately asked my services, in particular the Directorate General of Health and the regional health agency Nord-Pas de Calais, to take urgent safety measures laid down by the organization World Health Organization and the European Centre for Disease Control," said Touraine.

According to the French government director, Jean-Yves Grall, the patient is in "worrying condition."

To ease tensions within France, Touraine has opened up a hotline to all French citizens for any questions that they may have.

In the early 2000s, when the SARS outbreak first came to light, people all over the world were worried about a possible epidemic breaking lose. The virus outbreak lasted from 2003 to 2004 and claimed the lives of over 800 people.

Health officials note the symptoms as: fever, cough, shortness of breath, and breathing difficulties.

The virus often appears to be pneumonia and health authorities aren't clear yet on how the disease is transmitted and whether it can be transmitted from person-to-person.

"Any virus that has the potential to develop into something that is highly transmissible between people, including the coronavirus, is a major concern," said WHO spokesman, Gregory Hartl.