As of Oct. 26, health authorities confirmed 12 more cases of Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) and five deaths due to the sickness.
Six of the cases were in Taif, four from Riyadh, one from Madinah and one from Skaka. The patients’ ages range from 17-75. Nine of the patients are men. Ten of the patients are Saudi nationals. Health professionals confirm that 10 of the patients also have other health concerns.
Only two of the patients traveled outside their home cities in the 14 days before their symptoms arose. None of the patients had recently performed Umrah/Hajj.
The patients do not share contact with camels or camel products, though two of the patients live in regions populous with camels.
The World Heath Organization (WHO) has been informed of another MERS-CoV case reported to the National IHR Focal Point of Saudi Arabia on Oct. 6.
On a global scale, the WHO has confirmed 897 cases of MERS-CoV. Of these, 325 cases resulted in death.
Early symptoms of MERS-CoV are indistinguishable from common respiratory infections.
WHO encourages health care professionals to increase awareness of the virus. They also recommend that everyone takes practical measures in avoiding contamination, including airborne precautions. Individuals at higher risk include those with diabetes, renal failure, chronic lung disease and immunocompromised systems. People should especially avoid close contact with camels.