Qatar ranks 4th among Middle Eastern nations in MERS cases (n=14 as of today), with their last case (and 4th for 2015) reported on May 22nd of last year. Of these 14, more than 1/3rd (n=5) reportedly fell ill after recent travel from Saudi Arabia.
Today's case (h/t @Crof with a media report overnight) - recently returned from Saudi Arabia where he owns a sheep and camel barn.
Although things have been pretty quiet on the MERS front for the past few months, Saudi Arabia has reported a dozen cases - many listed as having camel exposure - over the past 30 days.
Ministry of Public Health (MOPH) has announced that a new Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Corona Virus (MERS-CoV) case has been confirmed for a 66 year old Qatari national, marking the 1st MERS-CoV case to be confirmed in Qatar in 2016 where the last confirmed case was reported on May 22nd 2015.
After his return from a trip to KSA where he owns a sheep and camel barn, the patient developed acute symptoms of fever, cough, and diarrhea associated with abdominal pain. He was taken by ambulance to Hamad General Hospital (HGM) where laboratory tests detected MERS-CoV. The patient is currently in critical condition and was admitted to the ICU in restricted infection prevention and control measures at HGH.
Once the case has been confirmed, the rapid response team of the Health Protection and Communicable disease Control department at the MOPH has carried out extensive search to list all potential contacts with the purpose to verify their consistence with the standard case definition of the suspected cases based on the WHO guidelines. All traced contacts will be monitored over a period of two weeks, while those who develop suspected symptoms will then be subject to laboratory investigation.
While research efforts continue on a global and local level to determine the modes of transmission of MERS-CoV infection, the Ministry of Public Health advice citizens and residents who suffer from chronic diseases to avoid direct contact with camels and washing hands with soap and water thoroughly. Also recommends to implement respiratory hygiene and cough etiquette in addition to boiling camel milk before consumption.
MOPH proclaimed that Health Protection & CDC Hotlines 66740948 & 66740951 are accessible 24/7 to respond to any notification or enquiry related to infectious diseases.