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Indiana MERS patient could be released soon

The maentrance Community Hospital. | File photo

The main entrance to Community Hospital. | File photo

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Updated: May 7, 2014 5:48PM



A Community Hospital patient continues to remain in good condition and still represents the only confirmed case in the United States of a new and fatal respiratory disease.

A release from the Munster hospital on Tuesday said that health officials are working on a plan to soon release the patient, who was the first confirmed case in the country of the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome, or MERS. The patient will remain in isolation at him until the state health department and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention clears him, according to the release.

The hospital also announced that all employees who came into contact with the patient before he was put in isolation and who have since been put in isolation at home will be done with their quarantine by Sunday. So far none of them have tested positive for MERS, and a final test will be conducted at the end of the 14-day waiting period. Lab tests for the patient’s close family contacts were negative, the release said.

MERS is believed to have originated in the Middle East around 2011 or 2012 and has killed about 30 percent of the patients it infects. Most of those are elderly patients who had other health issues.

For questions about MERS, call the state health department at 877-826-0011.



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