District at “no risk” for Ebola exposure

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Ben Prengler

Three students from the Lovejoy ISD were on a cruise ship with a passenger that was potentially exposed to Ebola, but after consultation with health experts, the district has been told there is “no risk” of exposure.

A cruise to Mexico and other Caribbean ports raised some concern in the district as one of the ship’s passengers was a Dallas lab supervisor who handled an Ebola patient’s blood samples. Also aboard the Carnival Magic cruise ship, three Lovejoy students on vacation with their families.

“In full disclosure, we have been told that there were Lovejoy ISD students from Lovejoy High School and Hart Elementary School who were on the Carnival Cruise ship that had one passenger who was on a self monitor status as a result of their role at Texas Presbyterian Hospital,” Superintendent Ted Moore said in a parent email sent out this afternoon.

During the cruise, the passenger voluntarily quarantined themselves in their cabin, and the passenger has not show symptoms, with today ending their 21 day monitor period. A blood test taken Saturday has returned negative for the Ebola virus.

“In an abundance of caution, we asked our Lovejoy parents to keep their children out of school today while we conferred with the health authorities and the 21 day monitor period had ended,” Moore said. “We have made contact with the Collin County Health Department, the Texas State Department of Health, and the CDC. We are in communication with these families and they have been assessed as “no risk”.”

The Collin County Health Department confirmed today the districts classification of “no risk”, and the three students are cleared to return to school October 21.

“We encourage our parents and students to become informed by visiting the Centers for Disease Control website at http://www.cdc.gov/vhf/ebola,” Moore said. “Along with you, we will continue to monitor this important healthcare issue in an effort to keep our students, staff and families healthy and focused on learning. If you have additional questions, you are welcome to contact me, or at the campus, please reach out to the school nurse or the campus principal.