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Saudi Arabia reports new MERS case

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    Posted: December 03 2014 at 6:24am
Saudi Arabia reports new MERS case as WHO confirms 18

Saudi Arabia's Ministry of Health (MOH) reported a new MERS-CoV case today as the World Health Organization (WHO) confirmed 18 cases previously reported by the MOH.

The new case is in a 28-year-old male expatriate in Najran in the south. He is not a healthcare worker (HCW) and had no exposure to other patients with MERS-CoV (Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus). He did, however, have recent exposure to animals. He has no preexisting disease and is listed in critical condition.

The MOH also reported that three MERS case-patients in Riyadh have recovered, including a 40-year-old female HCW. The other two are 44- and 45-year-old men. All three patients are Saudis and had preexisting disease.

The country now has had 815 MERS-CoV cases, including 350 fatalities. The MOH said that 8 of the patients are still receiving care.
Dec 2 MOH update

The WHO report today includes 18 cases that the Saudi MOH reported from Nov 3 through Nov 19, including 4 deaths. The WHO report, however, offers new details.

Half (9) of the patients are from Riyadh, 3 each are from Al-Kharj and Taif, 2 are from Sakakah, and 1 is from Jeddah. Patients range in age from 22 to 99 years, with a median age of 51.

Four patients reported animal exposure; 7 had confirmed or possible MERS-CoV contact in a healthcare setting, including being in the same hospital as a confirmed patient; and 7 reported no MERS-CoV exposure. In contrast to today's MOH report, the WHO reported 12 active patients among the group, with 8 listed as currently in stable condition and 4 as critical or in intensive care.

In related news, a study in the American Journal of Infection Control covering 536 lab-confirmed MERS cases reported globally as of May 9 found 11 events that involved possible or confirmed healthcare-related transmission. The outbreaks involved high morbidity and mortality, mainly among patients with preexisting disease.
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