CHICAGO - The Center for Disease Control sent out an alert on May 17th saying an Illinois man showed evidence of infection by the coronavirus that causes MERS. It was believed he acquired it from an Indiana doctor who imported the first case of MERS into the U.S. from Saudi Arabia in late April. The two were business associates and had two extended face-to-face meetings just before the Indiana man was admitted to the hospital.
As a result of the CDC’s preliminary findings, the Illinois man was told to ‘self-isolate’ – to stay at home or wear a surgical mask when he was around other people. The CDC also tracked down every person he had been in contact with and tested them for the presence of the virus.
Today, the CDC walked all of that back, announcing that the Illinois man was never infected with the MERS virus. The reason for the discrepancy appears to be a false positive test on the man’s blood.