Coronavirus Outbreak 2

This undated electron microscope image made available by the U.S. National Institutes of Health in February 2020 shows the Novel Coronavirus SARS-CoV-2, yellow, emerging from the surface of cells, pink, cultured in the lab. Also known as 2019-nCoV, the virus causes COVID-19. The sample was isolated from a patient in the U.S. (NIAID-RML via AP)

A student at Texas A&M University - Texarkana is being voluntarily evaluated for the COVID-19 virus. It is believed the student may have been exposed to virus at an event in another state. Below is the statement sent to students and faculty at the campus:

“Eagle Family, Out of an abundance of caution, an A&M-Texarkana student who may have been exposed to COVID-19 (Coronavirus) Is being voluntarily evaluated,” wrote Emily Cutrer, the university’s president. “We are taking appropriate precautionary health measures to isolate the student until results are received. We will keep you updated as additional information is available.

“Please follow the standard precautions for communicable diseases — wash your hands thoroughly and regularly. If you are ill, do not attend classes or campus activities. Seek medical attention if you have symptoms such as fever and sore throat. Resources regarding Coronavirus are available on our university’s website www.tamut.edu.”

This comes the day after a Frisco man tested “presumptive positive” for COVID-19. He and his family are under self-quarantine. Although he has experienced mild flu-like symptoms, he is otherwise in good health and has not been hospitalized. It is believed that the man, who is in his 30s, may have contracted the virus on a trip to California in late February.

This marked the first potential case of the virus in North Texas.

According to WFAA, “a ‘presumptive positive’ test result means local health workers have tested the patient and received a positive result, but the CDC has not confirmed a positive diagnosis. Now the CDC will work to confirm the patient’s diagnosis for COVID-19.”

In a recent story, The Paris News covered how schools in the community are preparing for if the virus makes an appearance in the county.

“Health officials are recommending that schools should take the same steps to protect against coronavirus as we take to prevent the spread of everyday illnesses like the common cold or flu,” North Lamar Superintendent Kelli Stewart said.

Paris Regional Medical Center officials said in press release last week the hospital is ready to detect and respond to COVID-19 should any cases present in Lamar County.

The hospital is working with Paris-Lamar County Health District, the Northeast Texas Regional Advisory Council and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to coordinate.

“Additionally, we are reviewing our facility’s robust emergency operations plan and proactively completing a number of preparation checklists out of an abundance of caution,” the release said.

“We are prepared for the possibility of influx and will respond accordingly.”

Jennifer Bussey is the assistant managing editor of The Paris News. She can be contacted at jennifer.bussey@theparisnews.com or 903-785-8744.

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