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Hospital Workers Returning to Work After MERS Case

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A spokesperson for Community Hospital in Munster says all hospital employees who had direct contact with a recent MERS patient have a confirmed second negative test for the virus and have been cleared to return to work and discontinue home isolation.  The first patient in the U.S. diagnosed with Middle Eastern Respiratory Syndrome (MERS), was released from Community Hospital this past Friday, May 9.  Officials say multiple tests conducted by the Indiana State Department of Health and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention were negative for the presence of the MERS-CoV infection in this patient. Health officials released the patient from isolation and he is cleared to travel, if necessary. “The public can be reassured that there is no risk to the community, as there have been no reported cases of people without symptoms transmitting this virus to another person,” said Alan Kumar, M.D., chief medical information officer, Community Hospital.
Health officials are now tracking down hundreds of people who may have come into contact with the second MERS patient in the US. That individual is improving in a hospital in Orlando, Florida.   Both patients, officials say, are healthcare workers in Saudi Arabia.
To keep you and your family healthy by reducing your risk of disease, the hospital advises people to follow CDC tips below:
·        Wash your hands often with soap and water for 20 seconds, and help young children do the same. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
·        Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze then throw the tissue in the trash.
·        Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
·        Avoid close contact, such as kissing, sharing cups, or sharing eating utensils, with sick people.
·        Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces, such as toys and doorknobs.


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