Two sick U.S. hospital workers test negative for MERS virus

Wed May 14, 2014 10:27am EDT

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May 14 (Reuters) - Two U.S. hospital workers who fell ill after contact with a patient suffering from Middle East Respiratory Syndrome have tested negative for the often deadly virus, a Florida health official said on Wednesday.

The second confirmed case of MERS on U.S. soil was hospitalized in Orlando, Florida after a 12-hour stay in the emergency department, potentially exposing healthcare workers to the virus.

Florida officials said they were monitoring a total of 20 healthcare workers who had been in contact with the patient. Test results of those workers have also so far proved negative for MERS, according to Kevin Sherin, director of the Florida Department of Health in Orange County. He could not specify the number of test results received. (Reporting by Barbara Liston in Orlando; Editing by James Dalgleish)

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