Should we be afraid of MERS (Middle East Respiratory Syndrome)?
Update : June 22, 2015
MERS was first reported in Middle East in 2012. Latest MERS cases have been reported in South Korea and Thailand.
Where did it really come from? Middle East respiratory syndrome shortly known as MERS is an illness that is caused by virus, more specifically a coronavirus. The cause of MERS-COV is not yet fully understood but camels are a probable source of infection transmit to humans.
MERS affects respiratory system. MERS patients usually have symptoms of fever, cough and shortness of breath but can have variable symptoms in individuals from mild symptoms to severe acute respiratory illness. It is also reported that patients had gastrointestinal symptoms such as diarrhea, nausea/vomiting and abdominal pain.
Patients with existing medical conditions are more likely to infect MERS easier and have more severity than healthy individuals. According to CDC (Center for Disease Control) reported MERS patients who died had underlying medical conditions.
Thailand's first MERS case was confirmed on 18 June 2015. The 75-year-old Omani man who arrived last 15 June 2015 to receive treatment at a Hospital in Bangkok. People who had close contact with the MERS patient underwent the standard 14-day quarantined period and none of them tests positive.
We, Vejthani Hospital would like to inform that we haven't had any MERS case, however due to the increase rate of International patients who come for treatment; not only from Middle East but also in different parts of the world, precautionary measures are being implemented. Most of us are familiar with the saying “Prevention is better than Cure”, Vejthani Hospital has numerous ways to prevent MERS:
- Vejthani Hospital limits entry points to 2 locations (front and back of the hospital)
- Each entrance is equipped with thermoscan for early detection of abnormal body temperature
- All patients will be inquired if they are experiencing any signs and symptoms of the illness, gathering information about history of travel areas cannot be disregarded to make sure that this disease will be perfectly screened.
As of 2015, CDC states that there is no vaccine available to prevent MERS, but symptoms can be treated. Let us introduce you with simple protective methods by:
- Frequent hand washing
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick
- Stay away from outbreak and crowded areas
- See Doctor immediately if you have flu like symptoms and have travel history in Arabian Peninsula and South Korea