Saudi Arabia announces another MERS case, global total now 80
The Ministry of Health (MoH) in Saudi Arabia has announced one additional laboratory-confirmed case and two deaths in previously confirmed cases of Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) infection in Saudi Arabia, according to a World Health Organization update today.
The new case is a 56 year-old female from Hafr Al- Batin city, North-eastern region. She is a health care worker with contact of a previously reported laboratory confirmed MERS-CoV case who subsequently recovered and was discharged.
This brings the global total cases of MERS-CoV to 80 cases.
In addition, the two deaths in previously confirmed cases are a 53 year-old citizen from the Eastern Region and a two year-old male from Jeddah.
With the addition of these two deaths, the number of fatalities officially reported by the WHO stands at 44.
The UN agency offers the following advise and guidance– Health care providers are advised to maintain vigilance, recent travelers returning from the Middle East who develop severe acute respiratory infections (SARI) should be tested for MERS-CoV as advised in the current surveillance recommendations and specimens from patients’ lower respiratory tracts should be obtained for diagnosis where possible.
Early next week, the WHO will convene an International Health Regulations Emergency Committee over the Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) to determine if the current situation constitutes a “public health emergency of international concern” (PHEIC).
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