Monday, April 21, 2014

No new cases of the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome

KUALA LUMPUR, April 20 — No new cases of the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome — Corona Virus (MERS-CoV) have been detected until today, said Health Director-General Datuk Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah.
In a statement today, he said no clusters of MERS-CoV infection were reported nationwide making the permanent cumulative total as one case of death.
“There was no positive infection of MERS-CoV from 79 samples taken from those who had close contact or no close contact with the victim,” he said.
Dr Hisham also said all 17 members of the group in the same umrah (visit to holy land) package as the victim were found to be healthy and did not show any symptoms and had been confirmed free of the virus.
Yesterday, it was reported that an examination of 15 umrah-goers who returned from the holy land with the man who was confirmed to have died of MERS-CoV, showed they were not infected.
On April 13, a 54-year-old man from Batu Pahat, Johor died at the Sultanah Nora Ismail Hospital from acute pneumonia after being infected with MERS-CoV.
The victim returned to Malaysia on March 29 and complained of fever, cough and breathing difficulties after 10 days and was admitted on April 10.
Dr Noor Hisham urged the public visiting the Middle East to boost their level of cleanliness by washing their hands often with soap or hand sanitisers especially after coughing, sneezing and shaking hands.
He also suggested that the public put on mouth and nose masks and to stay away from the sick, eating raw food, unwashed fruits or drinking untreated water during such visits.
Tour agencies specifically those handling umrah and haj packages were also urged to boost awareness on the virus. 
More information on MERS-CoV developments can be obtained at the Health Ministry’s website. — Bernama  

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