Coronavirus WHO Middle East Update
Dr. Dalia Samhouri manager for emergency preparedness and international health regulations for the World Health Organization’s Eastern Mediterranean region said Iran – where the deputy health minister is now a patient – apparently was on the lookout for influenza when confronted by the Coronavirus outbreak.
Iran has been making headlines of late for numerous reasons, whether it has to do with its tense relations with the United States or the recent parliamentary elections that appear to have favored the country’s hardliners. But now the focus is on news about Coronavirus.
To learn more about the overall Coronavirus situation in the Middle East, The Media Line spoke with Dr. Dalia Samhouri.
Dr. Samhouri reported that 9 countries in the region have reported Coronavirus cases. She added that Iran apparently was geared up toward testing more for influenza when it experienced its first cases, saying that active surveillance is the key to best handling the current outbreak there and elsewhere.
Common signs of the Coronavirus infection include respiratory symptoms, fever, cough, shortness of breath and breathing difficulties. In more severe cases, infection can cause pneumonia, severe acute respiratory syndrome, kidney failure, and even death.
Standard recommendations to prevent infection spread include regular hand washing, covering mouth and nose when coughing and sneezing, thoroughly cooking meat and eggs. Avoid close contact with anyone showing symptoms of respiratory illness such as coughing and sneezing.
Coronaviruses are zoonotic, meaning they are transmitted between animals and people. Detailed investigations found that SARS-CoV was transmitted from civet cats to humans and MERS-CoV from dromedary camels to humans. Several known coronaviruses are circulating in animals that have not yet infected humans.
Coronaviruses (CoV) are a large family of viruses that cause illness ranging from the common cold to more severe diseases such as Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS-CoV) and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS-CoV). A novel coronavirus (nCoV) is a new strain that has not been previously identified in humans.