‘No Widespread MERS Transmission’

An expert from the Atlanta-based Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said recently that there was no evidence of widespread transmission of the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) coronavirus in the Kingdom.

The observation was made by the CDC official during his meeting with acting Health Minister Adel Fakeih on MERS. Hassan El-Bushra, a representative of the World Health Organization (WHO) in Saudi Arabia, and three experts from the CDC, who spent a week investigating several MERS cases in Taif, were also at the meeting.

The experts, who are specialists in epidemiology, have been advising the Health Ministry’s Command and Control Center on efforts to reduce the risk of infection, which is thought to be initially transmitted to humans through unprotected contact with camels. Some human-to-human transmission in health care settings has also occurred.

“There was no evidence of widespread community transmission,” said the CDC expert. “We connected the dots on most of the cases to three or four primary cases.”

He recommended that the ministry continue its surveillance and infection prevention and control activities in Taif. “Proper infection control procedures are in place,” the expert said. “It’s a matter of continuing those activities and remaining vigilant because there will be more primary cases.”

(Source: Arab News)

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