Thursday, June 13, 2013

Middle East Respiratory Syndrome(MERS)-Corona Virus

Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS)

Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV), formerly called "novel coronavirus (nCoV)," was identified in 2012 in Saudi Arabia. Most people who got infected with MERS-CoV developed severe acute respiratory illness with symptoms of fever, cough, and shortness of breath. About half of them died. A small number of the reported cases had a mild respiratory illness. Investigators are trying to figure out the source of MERS-CoV and how it spreads. There are no reported cases in the United States.
This virus is different from any other coronavirus previously found in people. It is also different from the coronavirus that causedSARS (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome) in 2003. However, like the SARS virus, MERS-CoV is most similar to coronaviruses found in bats.

What Are Coronaviruses?

Coronaviruses are named for the crown-like spikes on their surface. They are common viruses that most people get in their lifetime. These viruses usually cause mild to moderate upper-respiratory tract illnesses.
Coronaviruses may also infect animals. Most of these coronaviruses usually infect only one animal species or, at most, a small number of closely related species. However, SARS coronavirus can infect people and animals, including monkeys, Himalayan palm civets, raccoon dogs, cats, dogs, and rodents.

Global Partners Working to Understand MERS

The World Health Organization (WHO), CDC, and other partners are working to better understand the possible risks from MERS-CoV to the public's health. Learn about what CDC is doing about MERS. Also, read a new article: Update: Severe Respiratory Illness Associated with Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV)—Worldwide, 2012-2013.

No Travel Health Warnings for Any Country Related to MERS

The World Health Organization or CDC has not issued travel health warnings for any country related to MERS.
For more information about the MERS situation and travel tips for traveling abroad, see CDC's travel notice: A Novel Coronavirus Called "MERS-CoV" in the Arabian Peninsula.

More Information

Image source: Cynthia Goldsmith/Maureen Metcalfe/Azaibi Tamin
Source and click for complete details:

Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) – Update

Disease Outbreak News                                                                                                                                                                   On 9 April 2014, the Ministries of Health of Jordan notified WHO of an additional laboratory-confirmed case of infection with Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV).
The patient is a 52 year-old man with underlying medical conditions. He visited Saudi Arabia from 20 to 29 March. He became ill on 25 March and visited a hospital in Jeddah. He returned to Jordan on 29 March and visited a hospital in Amman on the same day and on 2 April. He is currently in a stable condition.
The concerned authorities in Jordan are in contact with the concerned authorities in Saudi Arabia to follow up on all close contacts of the case.
Globally, from September 2012 to date, WHO has been informed of a total of 212 laboratory-confirmed cases of infection with MERS-CoV, including 88 deaths.

WHO advice

Based on the current situation and available information, WHO encourages all Member States to continue their surveillance for severe acute respiratory infections (SARI) and to carefully review any unusual patterns.
Infection prevention and control measures are critical to prevent the possible spread of MERS-CoV in health care facilities. Health-care facilities that provide for patients suspected or confirmed to be infected with MERS-CoV infection should take appropriate measures to decrease the risk of transmission of the virus from an infected patient to other patients, health-care workers and visitors. Health care workers should be educated, trained and refreshed with skills on infection prevention and control.
It is not always possible to identify patients with MERS-CoV early because some have mild or unusual symptoms. For this reason, it is important that health-care workers apply standard precautions consistently with all patients – regardless of their diagnosis – in all work practices all the time.
Droplet precautions should be added to the standard precautions when providing care to all patients with symptoms of acute respiratory infection. Contact precautions and eye protection should be added when caring for probable or confirmed cases of MERS-CoV infection. Airborne precautions should be applied when performing aerosol generating procedures.
Patients should be managed as potentially infected when the clinical and epidemiological clues strongly suggest MERS-CoV, even if an initial test on a nasopharyngeal swab is negative. Repeat testing should be done when the initial testing is negative, preferably on specimens from the lower respiratory tract.
Health-care providers are advised to maintain vigilance. Recent travellers returning from the Middle East who develop SARI should be tested for MERS-CoV as advised in the current surveillance recommendations. All Member States are reminded to promptly assess and notify WHO of any new case of infection with MERS-CoV, along with information about potential exposures that may have resulted in infection and a description of the clinical course. Investigation into the source of exposure should promptly be initiated to identify the mode of exposure, so that further transmission of the virus can be prevented.
People at high risk of severe disease due to MERS-CoV should avoid close contact with animals when visiting farms or barn areas where the virus is known to be potentially circulating. For the general public, when visiting a farm or a barn, general hygiene measures, such as regular hand washing before and after touching animals, avoiding contact with sick animals, and following food hygiene practices, should be adhered to.
WHO does not advise special screening at points of entry with regard to this event nor does it currently recommend the application of any travel or trade restrictions.