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RJ workers end self-quarantine with no COVID-19 symptoms

Five Las Vegas Review-Journal employees who were potentially exposed to COVID-19 during a journalism conference this month in New Orleans are out of a two-week self-quarantine after displaying no symptoms of the disease.

The employees attended the 2020 National Institute for Computer-Assisted Reporting conference on March 5-8.

Investigative Reporters and Editors — the nonprofit organization that organizes the conference — announced March 11 a conference attendee had tested positive for COVID-19. Five days later, it announced a second attendee also had tested positive.

Both have recovered and their two-week self-isolation period has ended, the nonprofit said in a Monday statement on its website.

“To IRE’s knowledge, no other #NICAR20 attendee has tested positive for COVID-19,” according to the statement.

Investigative Reporters and Editors said it hasn’t been contacted by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention or any state health department about the COVID-19 cases among its conference attendees.

Of the five Review-Journal employees who attended the conference, three were in a full-day workshop with the first affected attendee, Review-Journal Publisher and Editor Keith Moyer wrote in a March 11 email to staff.

After returning home, four of the five employees returned to the newsroom. They were self-quarantined at home starting March 11, and their workspaces and areas within the building they visited were disinfected, Moyer wrote in the email.

“The entire Review-Journal family is grateful that our colleagues were not infected with COVID-19 and that they are out of self-quarantine,” Review-Journal Executive Editor Glenn Cook said. “The health of our employees is our top concern amid the coronavirus pandemic.”

Five IRE employees were tested for COVID-19 at the University of Missouri — where the organization is based — and all results came back negative, the nonprofit said. Employees voluntarily self-isolated for two weeks but are now done.

Two University of Missouri professors and 25 students also were tested for COVID-19 and results came back negative.

Contact Julie Wootton-Greener at jgreener@reviewjournal.com or 702-387-2921. Follow @julieswootton on Twitter.

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