We’ve news this morning from the Netherlands’ RIVM and Erasmus Medical Center of that country’s first imported case of MERS, in this case, a traveler recently returned from Saudi Arabia.
The following (machine translated) statement comes from the RIVM (Netherlands National Institute for Public Health and the Environment)
On 13 May, the RIVM and the Erasmus MC for the first infection with the MERS coronavirus identified by a Dutch patient. He became infected during a visit to Saudi Arabia and is currently included in the Medical Center Haaglanden Westeinde. Here the patient is nursed in strict isolation. His health condition is stable. All the people who have had contact with the patient are mapped. These people's health condition is monitored.
MERS infections can cause severe respiratory symptoms, especially in people with other health problems. Diarrhea symptoms may also occur. Human-to-human transmission of the MERS coronavirus is rare, except in close contact with patients and unprotected care of seriously ill people.
Since 2012 there has been an outbreak of a new MERS coronavirus (Middle East Respiratory Syndrome) in the Middle East. Meanwhile, more than 500 patients in the Middle East have been reported to the World Health Organization. In April and May 2014, there is a sharp increase in the number of reports in the Middle East. The vast majority of reports come from this region (especially Saudi Arabia, as well as Qatar, Jordan, Oman, Yemen and United Arab Emirates). Since last year, there are also some patients are diagnosed in the United Kingdom, France, Italy, Greece, Philippines, Malaysia, Kuwait, Tunisia, Egypt, Germany and the United States. These were travelers who have been in the Middle East. Infected It is not unexpected that there is now a patient in the Netherlands. MERS coronavirus had therefore been a notifiable infectious disease.