Qatar’s proximity to Saudi Arabia
With 845 cases, more than 85% of all known MERS infections have originated in Saudi Arabia. Eight other Middle Eastern nations have contributed at least one case, with the UAE in second place with 73 cases, and Jordan in 3rd with 19.
In fourth place is Qatar, which – until today – had 9 cases recorded. The last two in October of 2014 (see Qatar SCH Statement On 2nd Recent MERS Case).
Today Qatar’s Supreme Council of Health has announced their 10th known case. Beyond telling us the patient’s age (55), this report provides more reassurance and advice than it does details.
- Publication Date:
- 01 February 2015
- Primary News
Supreme Council of Health (SCH) has announced that a new “Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Corona Virus (MERS-CoV) case has been reported for a resident patient aged 55 years old. The patient have had fever for 4 days and joint pain. Patient was transferred to Hamad Medical Corporation where he is currently receiving appropriate treatment. The laboratory diagnosis was confirmed in the national reference laboratory in Doha.
The Rapid Response Team of SCH conducted an epidemiological investigation including line listing of all close contacts to the case and initiate screening . Health education about appropriate preventive measures was given to the contacts along with close follow-up for any symptoms. Infection prevention and control measures in all health facilities have been re-enforced by the SCH.
SCH urges all community members to implement all the recommended infection prevention and control measures. As a general precaution, anyone visiting farms, markets, barns, or other places where animals are present should practice general hygiene measures, including regular hand washing before and after touching animals, and avoid contact with sick animals.
People with diabetes, renal failure, chronic lung disease, and immunocompromised persons are considered to be at high risk of severe disease from MERS‐CoV infection. Therefore, these people should avoid contact with camels, drinking raw camel milk or eating meat that has not been properly cooked.
Last week’s MMWR carried a MERS Epidemiological Update & Guidance document for clinicians, public health, and the public in anticipation that we might see a major surge in cases again this spring, like we did in 2014. More than half of all the cases since 2012 were reported between March and May of last year.