Nebraska News

Hospital: American video journalist free of Ebola
An Omaha hospital says an American video journalist is free of Ebola and will be released soon. The Nebraska Medical Center said Tuesday afternoon that Ashoka Mukpo's blood tested negative for the virus. He will be allowed to leave a biocontainment unit on Wednesday. Mukpo said in a statement that recovering from Ebola "is a truly humbling feeling." He also made several comments on Twitter. Mukpo, of Providence, Rhode Island, has been treated at the Nebraska Medical Center since Oct. 6. He contracted Ebola while working in Liberia as a freelance cameraman for NBC and other media outlets. He had tweeted that he's still not sure exactly how he caught the virus, but that he doesn't regret returning to Liberia in September to "help raise the alarm."

Official: Heineman wasn't told of prisons program
LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) — The director of Nebraska's prison system says Gov. Dave Heineman wasn't told about a temporary inmate placement program facing scrutiny from lawmakers. Director Mike Kenney also defended the program Tuesday in a letter to a legislative committee. Kenney says he alone created the program as part of the roundup of inmates who were released too early because their sentences were miscalculated. The program allowed five inmates to spend the final few weeks of their sentences at home, as long as they wore monitoring bracelets and reported twice a week to a parole officer. Some lawmakers have noted a memo by former prisons attorney which argued that state law hadn't authorized the program. Kenney disputes that argument, pointing to a law that lets the director designate places of confinement.

Woman slain in northeast Nebraska's Knox county
VERDIGRE, Neb. (AP) — A man has been taken into custody, suspected of shooting to death a 66-year-old woman in northeast Nebraska's Knox County. The Norfolk Daily News reports that Linda Privett was shot Monday and pronounced dead at her home in Verdigre (VUR'-dih-gree). Sheriff Don Henery says the 66-year-old man soon was taken into custody. Online court records don't show that he's been charged yet. An autopsy has been scheduled.

Journalist feels fortunate to recover from Ebola
OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — An American video journalist with Ebola says he feels lucky to be recovering from the deadly virus, but it's humbling to think about how many people have died from the disease in West Africa. Ashoka Mukpo (ah-SHOH'-kuh MUK'-poh) made several comments about Ebola on Twitter Monday. Mukpo has been treated at the Nebraska Medical Center since Oct. 6, and doctors have said he could be released by the end of the week if tests confirm he is free of the virus. Mukpo, of Providence, Rhode Island, contracted Ebola while working in Liberia as a freelance cameraman for NBC and other media outlets. He tweeted that he's still not sure exactly how he caught the virus, but that he doesn't regret returning to Liberia in September to "help raise the alarm."

Woman named to southeast Nebraska judgeship
FAIRBURY, Neb. (AP) — The governor has appointed a Fairbury lawyer to a county court judgeship in southeast Nebraska. On Tuesday the office of Gov. Dave Heineman announced that Linda Bauer will be replacing Judge J. Patrick McArdle, who has retired from his post in the 1st Judicial District The district is composed of Gage, Jefferson, Johnson, Nemaha, Pawnee, Richardson, Saline (suh-LEEN') and Thayer counties. The 48-year-old Bauer has been a partner at Schwab & Bauer in Fairbury since 1996 and has been Jefferson County attorney since 1996. She is a law school graduate from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

Canadian Pacific CEO says rail deal possible
The CEO of Canadian Pacific thinks U.S. regulators would approve a well-structured railroad merger, but nothing is planned now that talks with CSX ended. CEO Hunter Harrison said Tuesday he doesn't agree with the view that the Surface Transportation Board wouldn't approve any merger. Harrison said merging the Canadian Pacific Railway Ltd. with CSX Corp. could have improved service by routing traffic around the bottlenecks in Chicago. And Harrison says giving railroads access to customers on other rail networks would improve competition. But Harrison says CP officials and CSX found they couldn't agree on several issues, so talks ended after several meetings. Officials at Jacksonville, Florida-based CSX have declined to comment on reports on the possible deal. The other large railroads include Norfolk Southern, Union Pacific, BNSF and Canadian National.

Ebola causing spike in demand for hospital gear
BALTIMORE (AP) — Manufacturers and distributors of impermeable gowns and full-body suits meant to protect medical workers from Ebola are scrambling to keep up with a surge of orders from U.S. hospitals. Many hospitals say they already have the proper equipment but want more to prepare for a possible new Ebola case. This gear serves as a barrier between skin and bodily fluids such as blood or vomit, which transmits Ebola. The gear is crucial to preventing the spread of the virus, which has infected thousands across West Africa. Hospitals are paying close attention to their protective gear after two nurses contracted Ebola while caring for a Liberian man dying of the disease at a Dallas hospital. The CDC announced new guidelines Monday for health workers to wear face shields, hoods and boot covers that leave no part of the body exposed.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press

 

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