Over the past 3 days, Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Health (MOH) announced 12 new MERS-CoV cases, 9 of them in Riyadh, with at least 8 linked to a quickly growing healthcare outbreak in the city. Read full article.
Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) is a novel infectious disease caused by a coronavirus (MERS-CoV) first reported in Saudi Arabia in September 2012. MERS later spread to other countries in the Arabian Peninsula, followed by an outbreak in South Korea in 2015. At least 26 countries have reported MERS cases, and these numbers may increase over time. Due to international travel opportunities, all countries are at risk of imported cases of MERS, even if outbreaks do not spread globally.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued a health advisory to provide updated guidance to state health departments and healthcare providers in the evaluation of patients for MERS-CoV infection. The advisory includes a summary, background, current status and recommendations for healthcare providers for detection and testing of MERS-CoV infections worldwide and recommendations for healthcare providers and health departments.
June 2013: Since April 2012, there have been 64 laboratory-confirmed cases of human infection with MERS-CoV and 72% have been male. 38% of the confirmed cases have died.
Affected countries include Jordan, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, and Qatar. Additional cases have been found in France, Germany, the United Kingdom and Italy, all of which have had a direct or indirect link to the Middle East.
Although the exact timing and nature of exposures is unknown, in cases where exposure is known or suspected, the incubation period for laboratory confirmed cases has generally been less than one week. In some cases, the incubation may exceed one week but is less than two weeks.
CDC continues to work on better understanding the public health risks posed by MERS-CoV.
The continued reporting of new cases indicates that there is an ongoing risk for transmission to humans in the area of the Arabian Peninsula. New reports of cases outside the region raise concerns about importation to other geographic areas.
To date, a total of 55 confirmed cases have been reported with onsets occurring between April 2012 through May 29, 2013. Reported cases were directly or indirectly linked to one of four countries: Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Jordan, and the United Arab Emirates.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is working closely with the World Health Organization (WHO) and other partners to better understand the public health risk posed by Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV), a novel coronavirus that was first reported to cause human infection in September 2012.
No cases have been reported in the United States. The purpose of this advisory is to provide updated guidance to state health departments and health care providers in the evaluation of patients for MERS-CoV infection including expansion of availability of laboratory testing and, in consultation with WHO, expansion of the travel history criteria for patients under investigation from within 10 to 14 days for investigation and modification of the case definition.
Please disseminate this information to infectious diseases specialists, intensive care physicians, internists, infection preventionists, as well as to emergency departments and microbiology laboratories.