Ministry announces new MERS-CoV case

 24 May 2017 - 9:25

The Peninsula

Ministry of Public Health (MOPH) has announced that a new Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Corona Virus (MERS-CoV) case has been confirmed for a 29 years old, resident in Qatar, marking the third MERS-CoV case to be confirmed in the country this year and bringing the cumulative number of confirmed MERS-CoV cases since 2012 to 21 cases among whom 7 have died.

The patient is a camel worker and had complaints of fever and dry cough for several days.

He sought a medical attention in Hamad General Hospital where an X-Ray investigation suggested a severe pneumonia. Consequently and as he reported an occupational frequent contact with camels, further samples were withdrawn from the patient. He ultimately tested positive for MERS-CoV according to Hamad Medical Corporation laboratories.

Despite his stable condition, the patient was admitted to hospital, in consistence with the national infection prevention and control protocol for confirmed and suspected MERS-CoV cases to ensure the appropriate medical attention. 

However, neither a history of contact with similar cases nor a recent travel outside the country was reported for the patient who has no comorbidities.

Once the case has been confirmed, the rapid response team of the Health Protection and Communicable disease Control (HP & CDC) department at the MOPH, accompanied with the team from Animal Health Department, Ministry of Municipality and Environment, have started a field investigation to assess the possible source of the infection and to verify whether any of the patient contacts has suspected symptoms according to the WHO standard case definition.

Consequently, all traced contacts will be monitored over a period of two weeks, while those who develop suspected symptoms will then be subjected to confirmatory laboratory investigation.  

The Ministry of Public Health advices citizens and residents, in particular those with comorbidities or low immunity, to abide to cough etiquette and handwashing with soap and water thoroughly and avoid unnecessary contact with sick animals.  

MOPH proclaimed that Health Protection &CDC Hotlines 66740948 & 66740951 are accessible 24/7 to respond to any notification or enquiry related to infectious diseases.