Six things PR pros need to know on Monday, 10.20.2014

CDC to distribute new Ebola-treatment standards; Microsoft to unveil smartwatch; Mayer to reveal latest Yahoo turnaround plan.

1. The family of Amber Vinson, the second nurse who contracted Ebola at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital in Dallas, released a statement on Sunday saying she was not careless while treating patient Thomas Duncan or by taking a flight afterwards. The family has also hired a high-profile lawyer.

Duncan’s fiancee also released a statement this weekend thanking the two nurses who tested positive for Ebola after treating the Liberian national and crediting Dallas officials.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, meanwhile, is planning to distribute stricter guidelines on Monday for hospital workers tending to Ebola patients, calling for them to be completely covered.

2. Nearly half of respondents to a survey by released on Monday said they will "definitely" or "probably" not shop at retail chains victimized by major data breaches such as Home Depot or Target this holiday season. Forty-eight percent said they will probably use cash more often.

3. Microsoft is planning to unveil a smartwatch of its own in coming weeks, following launches by rivals Samsung and Apple, according to Forbes. The device’s selling points will be its ability to work across mobile platforms and a battery that can run for two days before it needs a charge.

Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella discussed his plans to shake up the company and apologized for comments he made earlier this month at a computing conference for women in which he said female employees should not actively seek raises. He also talked about inequality in the workplace with CNBC.

4. Yahoo chief executive Marissa Mayer will detail the company’s turnaround plan on Tuesday as it releases its third-quarter results. She will discuss cost-cutting initiatives and its acquisition strategy, according to The Wall Street Journal.

5. The Democratic Party is sending more money to long-shot Senate candidates in the weeks before the midterm elections as its chances of holding on to Congress’ upper chamber dim.

6. President Barack Obama made a rare campaign-trail appearance on Sunday, stumping for Maryland gubernatorial candidate Anthony Brown, but some members of the audience streamed out early. White House allies defended the president’s drawing power on Twitter.

Keeping one eye on…
Apple’s rollout of Apple Pay, which CEO Tim Cook ambitiously described as the company’s attempt to replace the wallet, and whether it runs into launch problems like #Bendghazi. Bloomberg Businessweek says retailers will love the service.

Also, Apple’s latest earnings report, set for release after the markets close on Monday. iPhone revenue will be a key metric, according to USA Today.

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