Arabic twitter lit up this morning (hashtag كورونا aka `Corona’) as reports streamed out of a conference held today by the Saudi Ministry of Health where they announced new plans to deal with the expected surge of coronavirus cases in the coming months under the banner of #فيروس_كورونا which translates to Veros_Korana which I take to mean `Corona Truth’.
Among the plans are the designation of regional receiving hospitals for MERS cases, stricter infection control policies, a 500,000 Riyal compensation for families of HCWs who died from contracting MERS at work, and what appears to be another `look back’ at hospitalized cases that may have been missed.
Although we’ve heard many of these same promises before, in fairness, the Ministry has a new leader (see Saudi King Appoints New MOH Amid Sweeping Changes To Ministries), who has had precious little time in office.
We’ll simply have to wait to see how well they are implemented in the coming weeks and months.
While Arabic news reports remain sketchy, probably awaiting more details from a soon to be held news conference, we do have the following (translated) statement which very recently went up on the Ministry of Health website.
D.abdaziz bin Said: You must comply with the instructions and the application of preventive measures to fight infection
Ahab Dr Abdulaziz Ibn Said, Deputy Minister of Health for Public Health and president of command and control center at the Ministry of Health of all workers in health facilities comply with the instructions and the application of preventive measures and work the basics of infection control and compliance paths screening of cases of respiratory in emergency departments and the use of personal protective tools according to the instructions notifying them of the command and control center Ministry of Health.
Valuing the Saudi Council of Ministers' decision to grant 500 thousand riyals for people with health workers of the deceased as a result of contracting the virus from infected Corona hospitals because they are martyrs of duty.
And Dr. Bin Said during conference chairman and members of command and control center at the Ministry of Health on Tuesday morning that the ministry is seeking to create a reference center for command and control in each region consisting of experts and specialist doctors to deal with the disease. Pointing out that the ministry is keen to control this virus.
He pointed out that the ministry and in the framework of transparency adopted by the Ministry of Health and a continuation of the epidemiological surveillance carried out by the desire to keep everyone on the latest developments regarding the corona virus that causes AIDS Middle East respiratory, the ministry would like to take it still recorded sporadic cases infected with the virus in some parts of the Kingdom since the beginning of the month of February, which is expected due to the change in the atmosphere during the coming period to increase the number of cases of respiratory infections, including HIV Corona, the ministry continues in collaboration with the Ministry of Agriculture and the World Health Organization WHO and the Center for Disease Control and American control of CDC and other stakeholders related to the application of all the precautionary measures preventive and to deal with the virus through a command and control center of the Ministry of Health to maintain the health and safety of all members of society, God willing.
Bin Saeed stressed that the ministry has adopted a partnership approach with all health sectors in the UK regional and international health organizations to contain the virus.
He called bin Saeed citizens to follow health guidelines set by the ministry for the prevention of the virus, and advised the citizens and residents of the following health practices which wash your hands with soap and water and avoid contact with sick and refrain from touching the eyes, nose and cough into a tissue or put the arm on the mouth and then wash your hands as well as the arm carefully and avoid Dealing in close contact with infected camels respiratory symptoms and commitment to preventive measures when dealing with camels. Everyone must especially for those who have chronic illnesses to avoid contact with camel milk is boiled or eating or scalded with the importance of maintaining good health habits in general.
Asking everyone if you want to get more information and to identify the steps infection prevention visit the ministry's website www.moh.gov.sa
For his part, Assistant Undersecretary for Preventive Health Dr. Abdullah Asiri pointed out that the ministry, including its expertise thanks to God, was able to control the virus during the Hajj season where stressed the non-entry of camels areas pilgrimage and not used in a sacrificial animal in addition to applying strict measures within health facilities operating in the pilgrimage.
Dr. Asiri said the ministry has formed special teams to assess infection control procedures in hospitals and training of health practitioners and screening criteria cases mechanisms so as to ensure that the spread of the disease within these facilities.
He pointed out that precious agree to consider the employees of the health sector of the Saudis and non-Saudis who lose their lives because of illness Middle East respiratory syndrome (Corona virus) martyrs of duty and disbursement of grant of $ (500.000) five hundred thousand riyals for those who died because of (Corona virus) factor in public health or private sector, was a civilian or military, and Saudis, or he is a Saudi, as of the record date of the first HIV infection 5-7-1434h came in recognition for his health practitioners of these sacrifices and their efforts to deal with the disease and to provide humanitarian medical services to reduce the spread of the disease, indicating that the Cabinet decision to form a committee in the Ministry of Health is composed of representatives from the ministries (health, financial, and civil service) would be responsible for the development of the necessary measures to implement the resolution.
It revealed Assistant Undersecretary for hospitals Aqeel bin Jamaan Al-Ghamdi, the ministry identified the reference hospital in each region to receive cases of Corona, was also because of what infection control and health facilities procedures, as well as the allocation of three reference centers in all of Riyadh, Jeddah and Dammam, stressing that the Ministry of Health's efforts to confront disease is ongoing throughout the year where regular meetings are held weekly to discuss the health situation and address emerging issues.
On the other hand, the official spokesman for the Ministry of Health Dr. Khalid Marghalani stressed that the ministry carried out a major awareness campaign through various media to educate the citizens and residents of the disease and ways to prevent it, has also been allocated the number (937) to receive inquiries, as was the use of social media to spread health awareness about this disease.
The representative of the World Health Organization in the Kingdom Dr Hassan al-Bushra, the Ministry of Health to deal with the organization with high transparency, stressing that the organization is keen to coordinate with the Ministry to reduce the number of cases and reduce the spread of the disease, pointing to educate citizens and residents about the disease and strengthen surveillance mechanisms and follow-up of cases will, God willing, in reduce the appearance of new cases.
Human and revealed that he will visit the UK during the period from 17 to 21 February at a high-level delegation comprising senior officials from the World Health Organization and representatives from the Centers for Disease Control in America and Europe to determine the current health status and follow-up actions taken by the Kingdom to meet Corona virus in order to coordinate efforts and to support the actions taken .
For his part, Dr. Ibrahim Ahmed Qassem Deputy Livestock Ministry of Agriculture director said that the ministry is working in close coordination with the Ministry of Health which has been implemented awareness campaigns in places camels gathered like cattle yards and fields races markets have also been implemented media campaigns where all educators and contacts and camel owners stressed the need caution and the reasons for the introduction of prevention when dealing with camels and take sanitary measures, and after that scientific studies conducted by the Ministry of Health on the presence of corona virus in the respiratory tract of beauty proved