MERS Kills 3 More as MoH Tightens Preventive Measures

2015-0217 MERS Kills 3 More as MoH Tightens Preventive Measures

As the Ministry of Health steps up precautionary measures against the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus ((MERS-CoV), three more deaths and 17 fresh cases were reported in the past three days.

According to a Health Ministry official, the new cases were discovered in Riyadh, Madinah, Alkhobar, Buraidah, Al-Rass, Najran and Badiah in Qassim.

The Health Ministry has warned public to take extra care of the virus since it could spread fast during the current transitional weather which has already affected some parts of the Kingdom.

Khalid Obaid Bawakid, vice president of the Command and Control Center at the ministry, said medics and paramedics in the private and public sectors who had contacted coronavirus patients, will not be allowed to travel outside the Kingdom during the first two weeks of their contact with the infected patients.

“And even after two weeks, those wishing to travel will be subject to a clinical test to ensure they are free of the infection,” said Bawakid.

He pointed out that there is a permanent supervisor deployed round the clock to monitor the movement of the disease and the services rendered by the health officials to the virus-infected patients.

Bawakid noted that virus patients will be treated at the emergency department on a priority basis.
He urged health workers and technicians to strictly adhere to the precautionary health and safety measures that should be applied to the virus patients.

With the new casualties, the total number of cases in the Kingdom since June 2012 has reached 886, including 483 deaths. A total of 27 patients are currently taking treatment in various hospitals in the Kingdom. So far, 483 have totally recovered from the illness following treatment.

Among the deceased were two Saudis from Riyadh and Madinah, while the third was a 41-year-old expatriate in Buraidah.

The ministry intensified its preventive and awareness endeavors following the return of the coronavirus to the country, where a number of individual infections were registered which coincided with the unstable weather conditions prevailing across the country. It also emphasized on activating all the preventive measures in hospitals, health centers through an integrated health system under the umbrella of the Command and Control Center.

The ministry has formed specialized teams to evaluate the procedures to fight the infection in hospitals and has deployed trained health practitioners on the mechanisms to deal with infected cases to ensure that the disease will not spread at these facilities.


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