As we discussed last night in EID Journal: Multi-facility Outbreak of MERS in Taif, Saudi Arabia, the exact route of infection for many Saudi MERS cases is less than clear. Some can be traced to having direct contact with a known MERS case either in the community or a healthcare facility, and while somewhat less definitive, a small percentage have had recent contact with camels or camel products.
But the source for nearly 40% of all the MERS cases identified in Saudi Arabia remains unknown.
Today’s MERS report lists another `primary’ case, with no obvious exposure risk. Additionally, 4 recoveries from Riyadh (including 1 HCW) are announced.
As we discussed in WHO EMRO: Scientific Meeting Reviews MERS Progress & Knowledge Gaps, the lack of a well mounted case-control study continues to hamper our understanding of how this virus spreads in the community, and the role (if any) played by mild or asymptomatic carriers of the virus.