Italy: First Case Of SARS-Like Coronavirus ‘MERS-CoV’ – WHO: Coronavirus ‘Threat To The World’ – Of 49 Infections, 27 Resulted In Death

Italy announces first case of SARS-like coronavirus (Reuters, May 31, 2013):

Italy reported its first case of the SARS-like coronavirus on Friday, a 45-year-old man who had been travelling in Jordan, the health ministry said.

The patient was in good condition and was being monitored in isolation, the ministry said in a statement. He was admitted to a hospital in Tuscany with a high fever, a cough and breathing difficulties.

A resident of Italy with foreign nationality, the man recently spent 40 days in Jordan where one of his sons was suffering from an unspecified flu.

Saudi Arabia has been the most affected by the virus, with 39 cases and 25 deaths so far, according to data from the World Health Organization.

The virus, which can cause coughing, fever and pneumonia, has spread from the Gulf to France, Britain and Germany. The WHO has called it the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV).

It is from the same viral family that triggered the outbreak of Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) that swept the world in late 2003 and killed 775 people.


WHO: Coronavirus ‘threat to the world’

Newly discovered virus takes more lives, spreads (CNN, May 30, 2013):

A new SARS-like virus recently found in humans continues to spread — with the worldwide total now at 49, the World Health Organization said Wednesday.

Of the 49 known infections with the MERS-CoV virus, 27 have resulted in death, the organization said.

The latest deaths were reported in Saudi Arabia.

The Saudi health ministry said Wednesday that three people died from their infections in the country’s eastern region.

It “is not a problem that any single affected country can keep to itself or manage all by itself,” Margaret Chan said Monday in her closing remarks at the 66th World Assembly in Geneva, Switzerland.Although many of the cases have occurred on the Arabian Peninsula, people have died of the infection elsewhere.

However, “all of the European cases have had a direct or indirect connection to the Middle East,” the WHO said earlier this month. But “in France and the United Kingdom, there has been limited local transmission among close contacts who had not been to the Middle East but had been in contact with a traveler recently returned from the Middle East.”

On Tuesday, a patient died in France after having contracted the virus during a trip to the Middle East, the WHO reported.

Coronaviruses cause illnesses ranging from the common cold to SARS, or Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome, as well as a variety of animal diseases.

However, the new virus is not SARS.

The WHO recently gave it a more specific name: Middle East respiratory symptom coronavirus, or MERS-CoV.

It acts like a cold virus and attacks the respiratory system, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has said. But symptoms, which include fever and a cough, are severe and can lead to pneumonia and kidney failure.

Health officials do not yet know much about how the virus spreads, which makes it hard for scientists to prevent infections, Chan said.

The WHO is calling for the world to pull together its resources to study and tackle the virus.

New virus is a ‘threat to the entire world’

4 thoughts on “Italy: First Case Of SARS-Like Coronavirus ‘MERS-CoV’ – WHO: Coronavirus ‘Threat To The World’ – Of 49 Infections, 27 Resulted In Death

  1. The world is too divided to pool it’s resources to fight this at this point. The Chinese claimed they lost 600-800 people during the SARS epidemic of a decade ago, but I had first hand information from my many hiring managers who were spending at least a week per month in China at that time that the real numbers were in the many thousands. Entire villages were wiped out, and the Chinese lied about it, just like they do everything else.
    Diseases from the Black Plague to the present often come from filthy surroundings. If you visit China, the cities are beautiful, but when you get into the countryside where the factories are, it is awful. People live, eat, sleep and die where they work in sweatshop environments that would turn your stomach. Workers are often literally caged in these places, they work long hours without bathroom breaks…….it is subhuman.
    Add the fact all nations are working on developing virus’ that can be spread from animal to human as a form of bio warfare, and we all face grave problems from this. Such a disease that could go from animal to human was unheard of until a decade ago. The black plague came from flea bits of infected rats…….The plague is still around today, but right now, antibiotics can cure it. At the rate things are mutating, that could change.
    We have too many countries working on negative things, and that is why there won’t be a coming together. A lot of what is being done is illegal, and nations will lie about it. As a result, many will die. A virus that can go from animal to human was man-made, that much is clear.
    After WWI, there was a peace agreement that outlawed the use of chemical and biological warfare. That is long gone. In the time of the Borgias, plague infected blankets, rags and corpses were thrown into enemy cities, there is nothing new about any of this.
    I always figured the planet would rid itself of destructive things. It is rather depressing to see mankind creating weapons to destroy each other…….like radiation, we cannot see the germs that virus’ bring.
    Thanks for the story. I am sure mainstream media won’t touch it. Actually, Lou Dobbs discussed it briefly a few days ago because of the high mortality rate. I don’t normally listen to TV news, I was scanning for news about Libya.

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