MERS – Saudi Arabia

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October 31, 2021 – Four cases of MERS-Cov has been reported in Saudi Arabia. The first case, a 50-year-old male, was reported on October 31, 2021. This case was a reported fatality. On November 8, a 45-year-old male was diagnosed with the virus. Then, on December 12 and 26, 2021, a 79-year-old male and 49-year-old (gender not reported) were reported to have been diagnosed, respectively. The total number of cases for the year 2021 was 17.

The origin of the infection is likely to be from dromedary camels, according to the source. MERS-CoV is a zoonotic infection and can be transmitted to a human from contact with an infected animal. It is suspected that these individuals have been in contact with an infected dromedary camel.

The source mentions that though exposure between humans is likely, transmission among family members related to infected persons has a low likelihood. Among health care workers, however, exposure has a greater likelihood. No additional public health response has been mentioned in this source.

Photo: MERS-CoV particles electron micrograph.

Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS), also known as camel flu, is a viral respiratory infection. Symptoms may range from none, to mild, to severe and frequently include fever, cough, diarrhea and shortness of breath. The disease is typically more severe in those with other health problems.

MERS is a coronavirus believed to be originally from bats.

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