Uniondale man who contracted COVID-19 is part-time employee at Mercy Medical Center

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The Uniondale man who contracted COVID-19 is a part-time employee at Mercy Medical Center, the hospital confirmed.

In a statement, Mercy Medical Center says it was "notified by New York State Department of Health that a part-time employee of MMC tested positive for COVID 19, the respiratory illness caused by the coronavirus" on March 3.

"After being off for a period of time, the individual worked a single eight-hour shift at MMC toward the end of February and did not exhibit any symptoms of illness at that time. The individual went to another Long Island hospital, because he was not feeling well. He was admitted and has since tested positive for infection with the virus."

Specialists at MMC are now trying to determine who the Uniondale man came into contact with. News 12 sources say the patient works in the physical therapy and rehabilitation department.

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Catholic Health Services says it is "prepared to diagnose and treat patients showing symptoms of COVID-19 while also taking the necessary steps to prevent the spread of the disease."

Officials say the 42-year-old patient in isolation at Winthrop Hospital in Mineola has an underlying health condition, but didn't say what it was. They did say his condition is improving.

It's not clear exactly how he contracted the coronavirus. Officials have said the case is likely an example of what's known as "community spread" — which means the patient has no known travel history or contact with anyone else infected with the disease.

Nassau County Executive Laura Curran announced Friday night that three new cases of the coronavirus came from people who are "close contacts" with the Uniondale man.

The Uniondale school superintendent posted a message to parents in the district.

"The District has been in close contact with Nassau County and New York State health officials, and we have been told that at the current time, there is no reason to take any additional precautionary or preventative measures than those we already have in place."

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Officials say they will notify anyone who may have been exposed to the disease.

Uniondale resident Nedys Baires says he was shocked and frightened when he heard his neighbor is the man who was diagnosed.

"I'm feeling bad for him," he says. "Everybody's scared now."


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