Thirteen new MERS cases confirmed in Riyadh outbreak

Saudi Arabia reported 14 new MERS-CoV illnesses, along with 4 more deaths, over the past 3 days, with all but 1 of the infections linked to an ongoing hospital-related outbreak in Riyadh.

Today alone 9 new MERS-CoV (Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus) cases were reported in the country's capital, vaulting the nation's overall total from the disease above the 1,100 mark, to 1,105.

The only case confirmed over the past few days outside of Riyadh involves a 64-year-old foreign man in the southern city of Najran who works in a health setting, Saudi Arabia's Ministry of Health (MOH) said when it announced four cases yesterday. He is listed in stable condition. The investigation into his case so far has found no history of contact with a suspected or confirmed MERS case.

The 14 new cases in Riyadh, many of them with hospital-related links, bring the number of Saudi MERS illnesses since Aug 1 to 46.

New case details

On Aug 15 the MOH reported one new Riyadh case, that of a 63-year-old Saudi woman who is hospitalized in stable condition. The woman is not a health worker, and authorities are still reviewing any contact she may have had with a suspected or confirmed case in the community or hospital.

The following day, heath officials reported the sick healthcare worker from Najran, along with three more cases in Riyadh, one of them fatal. Investigators are still reviewing the contact status for all those Riyadh cases. The patients, all of them Saudi citizens, include a 60-year-old man who died from his infection and a 41-year-old man and 31-year-old woman who are hospitalized in stable condition.

All 9 cases reported today involve Saudi citizens, and all had contact with a MERS case-patient. One patient is healthcare worker, a 39-year-old man who is hospitalized in critical condition.

The others eight are all adults who range in age from 55 to 98. Six are men and two are women. Five are listed in stable condition, and three are listed as critical.

As of today, 33 people in Saudi Arabia are being treated for MERS-CoV infections, and 3 are in home isolation.

Latest fatalities

One of the four deaths reported in the past 3 days involved a newly reported case-patient, a 60-year-old Saudi man whose illnesses was detailed in yesterday's MOH statement.

The other three fatalities occurred in previously announced cases, two of them from Riyadh. The deaths that are part of the Riyadh outbreak involve a 56-year-old woman and a 50-year-old man, both of whom had underlying medical conditions.

The fourth death was reported yesterday in a 68-year-old man from Abha, located in southwestern Saudi Arabia. The MOH said he also had a preexisting health condition.

Overall outbreak metrics

Two more people, both from Riyadh, have recovered from their infections over the past few days, the MOH said. Over the course of the outbreak, which began in 2012, 590 people have recovered from MERS-CoV.

The 1,105 total cases include 479 deaths, the MOH noted in today's update.

See also:

Aug 15 Saudi MOH statement

Aug 16 Saudi MOH statement

Aug 17 Saudi MOH statement

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