- - Friday, June 19, 2009


Cowboy rescues boy in well

DODDRIDGE — It was a cowboy to the rescue when a 7-year-old boy fell into an abandoned water well in southwest Arkansas.

Reed Nations pulled Jonathan Easter out of the well with a lariat Tuesday morning before rescuers summoned by his grandmother could arrive.

Jonathan was helping his aunt clear brush around an old house near Doddridge. He fell 20 to 30 feet down the well, which has sand walls. Mr. Nations came from a nearby ranch and used a rope lariat to pull Jonathan to safety.

Jonathan escaped with only a cut on his arm, Miller County sheriff’s deputy Alan Keller said.


Worker safety lax in swine flu cases

ATLANTA — The first study of U.S. health care workers who contracted swine flu found that many didn’t do enough to protect themselves against the virus.

Researchers focused on 13 nurses and other health care workers who were likely infected at work in the early days of the U.S. outbreak. They found that only half always wore gloves, and even fewer routinely wore other protection around patients who might have the virus.

In late April — just as U.S. cases were first mounting — the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said health care workers should wear gloves, gowns, eye protection and respirator masks when dealing with patients suspected of having swine flu. The CDC also advised sick workers to stay home.

To date, about 80 health care workers have been confirmed to have swine flu. The study examined the 26 cases of infected workers with detailed information as of mid-May.

The study is being published this week in a CDC publication called Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

The 80 cases of health care workers are out of the nearly 18,000 confirmed and probable U.S. cases reported as of last Friday. Those numbers suggest health care workers are underrepresented in the case counts, CDC officials said.

About 1,600 people have been hospitalized and at least 44 died, according to CDC numbers.

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