Friday, May 30, 2014
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State Public Health Director Statement on Illinois Resident Not Infected with MERS-CoV

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[May 30, 2014]  CHICAGO – U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announced today that after conducting more definitive laboratory tests, it found the Illinois resident was not infected with Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV) while having a business meeting with the man later hospitalized in Indiana with MERS-CoV.  Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) Director Dr. LaMar Hasbrouck has this message to the public.

“We initially conducted respiratory testing of the Illinois resident – with negative test results for being infectious.  The CDC tested the resident’s blood, and found indications the resident may have been infected at one time.  CDC conducted additional and more definitive tests, and we are relieved to learn the Illinois resident was never infected. 

“Although the Illinois resident was never thought to have been infectious, there was an indication the man had previously been infected.  Out of concern for the public’s health and safety, we moved quickly to alert the public and identify any potential close contacts.  We would rather err on the side of caution as we learn more about this virus. 

“I want to reassure residents that if there is an indication a person may be infected with MERS-CoV, health officials in Illinois will vigilantly follow-up with this person and take all precautions, as we did with this Illinois resident, to protect the health and safety of our residents.”  

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For more information about CDC testing and MERS-CoV cases, visit  General information about MERS-CoV can be found on the IDPH website, including Frequently Asked Questions.


IDPH continues to implement its Five Year Strategy 2014-2018 to maximize IDPH’s effectiveness, influence and value for promoting wellness, health equity, safety and improved health outcomes.  Strategic plan priorities include developing and expanding partnerships; improving data utilization; reducing health disparities; improving regulatory compliance; and branding, marketing and communicating IDPH’s value.

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