CHICAGO, IL (KFVS) - Health officials in Illinois are monitoring the latest news surrounding a MERS case that was confirmed in the United States.
Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) Director LaMar Hasbrouck is reassuring Illinois residents that IDPH, local health departments and health care providers are remaining alert for any new cases of MERS.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on Monday confirmed the MERS case in the U.S. in a person who traveled from Saudi Arabia on the way to Florida on May 1.
Health officials say that patient is isolated in a hospital, and health officials are following up with close contacts to the patient. Also, health officials are notifying people who traveled on flights with the patient.
"While this second confirmed case of MERS-CoV is unwelcome, it is not unexpected and we anticipate seeing additional cases imported to the U.S.," said Dr. Hasbrouck. "We will continue to watch for additional cases of MERS-CoV and are at-the-ready to conduct laboratory testing should it be needed. I want to reassure Illinoisan's that the risk to the general public remains extremely low as MERS-CoV has not been found to spread easily from person to person in community settings."
On May 9, Health officials verified that the first patient has since tested negative for MERS was no longer symptomatic and posed no threat to the community. The patient was discharged from the hospital.
For more information about both MERS cases in the U.S., and general MERS information, visit www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/mers/index.html.