The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has confirmed the first reported case of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV) in the United States, bringing the total number of confirmed cases to 401 individuals resulting in 93 deaths. The patient is isolated in a hospital in Indiana and is in stable condition.
MERS-CoV infection was first reported in 2012 in Saudi Arabia and has been reported in 12 countries, with all cases originating in 6 countries in the Arabian Peninsula. This viral infection can cause severe respiratory illness with symptoms of fever, cough, and shortness of breath but some infected individuals exhibit mild symptoms or are asymptomatic. The source of the virus is unknown but is thought to originate from an animal source. Currently there is no available vaccine or specific treatment recommended for MERS-CoV.
At this time, the CDC is not recommending changes in travel plans and the World Health Organization (WHO) has not issued Travel Health Warnings for countries linked to MERS-CoV. Individuals traveling to countries in or near the Arabian Peninsula who develop fever, cough or shortness of breath within 14 days post-travel are advised to see their doctor and inform them of their travels.
For more information call (800) 232-4636 or visit CDC.gov.