- People from middle east countries visit the city often and around five deaths were reported because of Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) and the health department has not taken any measures yet
- Referred as Saudi Arabia’s SARS-like virus, MERS-CoV infection is similar to severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) around 126 deaths were 101 cases alone from Saudi Arabia have been reported from September 2012 till date globally says WHO.
- Health Minister U.T. Khader on Friday admitted that the department has not taken precautionary measures as the union government has not given any advisory so far
- Mr. Khader said “Without an advisory from the Centre we cannot initiate precautionary measures on our own because it entails screening of people at the airport,” he said.
- Last year, a suspected case of MERS-CoV was detected from among a batch of 450 Haj pilgrims who returned to the city and the city-based experts involved in influenza surveillance have advised people not to panic as the risk of sustained person-to-person transmission of MERS-CoV is low.
- The incubation period of MERS-CoV was 12 days and the symptoms of this infection were similar to that of influenza very similar to A (H1N1) virus.
- As the virus could spread from person to person only through close contact, it was advisable for people to avoid direct contact with infected persons and not to panic.
- Since the incubation period is more it was likely that the infection would not be detected when a person lands in the city and the Health Minister said the department had stepped up surveillance and awareness measures as the number of influenza A(H1N1) cases were on the rise.
- Read at : http://www.thehindu.com/todays-paper/tp-national/karnataka-yet-to-gear-up-to-tackle-merscov/article5995140.ece