Although we’ve seen fewer MERS cases reported out of the Arabian peninsula this year, compared to last, the virus continues to circulate and – as we’ve recently seen in Iran and Germany – occasionally ends up carried to other countries by infected travelers.
While nearly all of the 1100+ confirmed cases of MERS have been confined to 10 nations in the Middle East, just over two dozen have turned up over the past three years outside the region (see ECDC list below)
Today South Korea joins this short list with at least one – possibly two – MERS cases after a worker recently returned from Bahrain tested positive for the illness. His wife, who is mildly symptomatic, is being tested as well.
Interestingly, Bahrain has never reported a MERS case before, so the source of infection (if it can be determined) will be of great interest.
A reminder that between extended incubation periods, rapid airline travel, and a highly mobile society that infectious diseases can easily travel to any corner of the earth.
First a quick report from Reuters, then the more detailed (translated) statement from the South Korean Ministry of Health.
South Korean health officials on Wednesday confirmed the country's first case of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) in a patient who recently returned from Bahrain and is in stable condition after being treated for a high fever and cough.
The 68-year-old man was in Bahrain from April 18 through to May 3 and was engaged in farming-related business, South Korea's health ministry said in a statement. He returned to South Korea on May 4 through Qatar, it said.
The patient's wife who nursed him also has a minor respiratory symptom and the results of tests on her would be available on Thursday, Kim Young-taek, a director at the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, told Reuters by telephone.
Strengthen the quarantine for further inflows from the Centers for Disease Control and Proliferation, strong enforcement measures such as quarantine treatment
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (Director: Ms. byeongguk) is today (5.20 days) from the Bahrain nationals of entry was announced that one person identified as the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (Homers) patients.
- 68-year-old man
- While staying in Bahrain 4.18 to 5.3 days work-related crop cultivation engaged
- 5.4 days via entry through the Incheon International Airport in Qatar, when there was no entry signs
- 5.11 days (7 days after the arrival) caused symptoms such as fever and cough
- 5.11 days A hospital outpatient, 5.12~14 B hospitalization, 5.17 C hospital emergency room visits
- 5.18-20 C hospitalization
- 5.19 specimen referral, 5.20 days pathogen diagnosis (NIH)
- 5.20 transferred to a state-designated hospital care beds and during treatment (stable state)
5.19 days immediately after infection commissioned sample of the patient and family, until now, doctors began the epidemiological investigation of such contacts,
- 5.19 days in Seoul mechanics investigators conduct epidemiological studies on the subject commissioned case
- 5.19 to 20 days Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (NIH) genetic tests carried out
- Epidemiological survey of the Centers for Disease Control about 5.20 days after the patient is the central dynamics Questioned 5.11 days at a medical and family therapy
· There is no patient contact force with a common infection in animals such as a camel-like symptoms or respiratory contact force of Mer's length of stay in the immigration process
· Recent stay in Bahrain is a country that is not a patient has occurred Homers, via the Immigration process, Qatar has recently occurred two months patients without country
* 2012 after the MER seuneun 1,142 people in 23 countries occurred, about 90% of double and Saudi Arabia, one of Saudi Arabia is currently occurring sporadically Mer Suga
· Among the family's respiratory symptoms from mild to deny care to patients with a confirmed test in progress
· No case is symptomatic in three hospital staff confirmed to date
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced that the immediate implementation of the following measures in order to prevent domestic and add additional flows propagate.
1. step in upgrading a note of interest, installing a central quarantine measures in the relevant departmental headquarters correspondence and switch to the disease management system led directly to general manager
2. The institutions and cooperation and isolation diagnosis and treatment for patients, while operating a state-designated isolation wards inpatient treatment systems
3. The family, self-isolation and epidemiological studies conducted for the staff, including close contacts of
4. strengthen the quarantine for those countries such as the Middle East Jingu arrivals gate for the heat transfer monitoring and health status questionnaire
5 to 24 hours of operation for the dedicated rapid diagnostic tests half (NIH)
6. strengthen cross-border cooperation system to inform the patient that occurred in the WHO Foreign Ministry and other related ministries and infection prevention research and propagation between countries
In addition, Centers for Disease Control is currently in improving patient symptoms, but some of the families showing symptoms of mild and similar to the survey of contact with potentially infected, including medical staff, the inflow of quarantine for the transfer of suspected State Immediate enforcement and announced that no possibilities for the propagation of ordinary people.
- WHO is a public health crisis, MERS, but decided to target infectious diseases, the current situation is traveling cross-country, trade, transport, etc. are made to limit the assessment not official (2015.2 month)