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A health care provider at one of Lewiston’s two hospitals has tested positive for COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus that has brought much of daily life to a halt.
The provider at St. Mary’s Regional Medical Center last worked clinically nine days ago, said Jason Gould, director of marketing and business development for the St. Mary’s Health System. The hospital is working with state public health officials to notify the provider’s co-workers, patients and other contacts who could have been exposed to the virus.
The Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention “will help us identify patients and staff who may be directly impacted, and we will be facilitating testing and treatment for those at risk,” Gould said.
Health care workers are at a high risk of contracting the novel coronavirus, as they’re called upon to treat cases of the infection and work where infected people are seeking care.
The provider at St. Mary’s isn’t the first Maine health care employee to test positive for COVID-19, as the number of cases statewide has reached 118. A Northern Light Mercy Hospital worker was one of the state’s first 17 cases of the virus, forcing the hospital to temporarily close two off-site practices in Portland.
BDN writer Charles Eichacker contributed to this report.