US detects 2nd MERS case; Saudi Arabia has 18 more

Tuesday, May 13, 2014
By Paul Martin

Lisa Schnirring
CIDRAP News
May 12, 2014

A second imported MERS-CoV (Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus) infection has been detected in the United States, in another health worker who had been living and working in Saudi Arabia and traveled to the states to visit family, officials from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Florida announced today.

Identification of a second US case comes amid a steady rise in cases from Saudi Arabia and a report that the virus has killed another health worker in Jordan. Saudi Arabia reported 18 new cases, 3 of them fatal, today and over the weekend.

Second case bears similarities to first

The new US patient started having mild symptoms such as fever, chills, and a slight cough on May 1 on a flight from Jeddah to London, the first flight of a four-leg trip to visit family in the Orlando area, CDC officials said at a press telebriefing.

He sought care in the emergency department of an Orlando hospital on May 9 and was admitted. Florida health officials said the man was placed in isolation once MERS-CoV was suspected. The patient’s sample tested positive at a Florida lab, with the finding confirmed by the CDC yesterday.

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