Sunday 20 October 2013

Latest MERS-CoV cases

The 1st of the 3 most recent cases were from Qatar (6 in total) and the other 2 seem to have originated in or around Riyadh in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA). 

Some details on each case are below (preceded by the FluTrackers' number):
  1. FT#144. 61-year old male (61M) with comorbidities, hospitalized October 11th with influenza-like symptoms, no travel outside Qatar in the preceding 2-weeks. Owner of a farm, he had significant contact with camels, sheep and chickens. Some animals were tested but were not MERS-CoV POS
  2. FT#145. 73M with comorbidities and no specific travel history outside of Riyadh. ICU.
  3. FT#146. 54? No travel history outside the eastern region of KSA/Riyadh. ICU.
There are now 144 cases - remembering that 2 Italian cases have been moved from confirmed to probable. Their numbers are retained although not counted in the lab confirmed tally. This maintains list integrity for all the cases numbered prior to that change. 

Click to enlarge.
Of the 144, 60 (perhaps 62) have died, a proportion of fatal cases of 42%. Age distribution among fatal MERS-CoV cases is shown in the chart. There are some missing data on sex/age but it shows that the median age of cases is still skewed toward those >55-years of age and that males predominate. The median age of fatal cases lies above that of the total case population (including fatal and surviving cases).

As noted by Helen Branswell today on twitter (@HelenBranswell) and Crawford Kilian on his blog - the English version of the KSA Ministry of Health website has not been updated with its Arabian-language data in 22-days. 

It's becoming very hard to find 2 sources of MERS case information to trust these days. There has been no World Health Organization (WHO) confirmation of the 2 recent KSA cases and there are possibly 2 outstanding fatal cases in the wind. The WHO did pass along the Qatari case details, plus a little more. Communication between the KSA MOH  and WHO (and us) seems to have slowed to a trickle.

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