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He is a lawyer in New Rochelle, which quickly become one of the nation's first hotspots for COVID-19 in the early days of the pandemic in March.

The 50-year-old said there was no mention whatsoever of coronavirus when he first went to see his doctor.

"I just thought it was a cough," Garbuz said. "A winter cough, and quite frankly, I'm not certain that any of the sort of medical staff had been thinking about that initially when they examined me."

He said that he has no idea how he got the virus, and said he hadn't done any traveling.

"I'm a lawyer. I sit at a desk all day. I think at the time we were sort of focusing on individuals who had maybe traveled internationally, something that I had not done."

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Eventually, as more about the virus became known, he was tested and it came back positive of March 2. His wife said she then began contacting health officials to tell them everywhere he'd been.

"[I was] on the phone through the night with various departments of health finding out what to do, and sharing everywhere we went... I didn't want anybody else to get sick," she said.

"I really have not focused on any of the media frenzy in terms of one of the first patients to get it," he said. "But I have been focused more on, as I say, getting better."

Garbuz was hospitalized, but is now recovered.

To date, over 80,000 people in the U.S. have died from the coronavirus.

The CDC has issued some tips for helping to avoid contracting the disease.

Avoid close contact with people who are sick.

Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.

Stay home when you are sick.

Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.

Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.

Facemasks should be used by people who show symptoms of COVID-19 to help prevent the spread of the disease to others. The use of facemasks is also crucial for health workers and people who are taking care of someone in close settings (at home or in a health care facility).

Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.

If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol. Always wash hands with soap and water if hands are visibly dirty.

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