Kuwaiti health officials have reported a death due to Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) infection this past weekend.
According to the details of the case, a 78-year-old male from Kuwait city developed symptoms on 8 September and, on 13 September, was admitted to hospital. The patient, who had comorbidities, tested positive for MERS-CoV on 14 September.
The patient owned dromedary camels and had a history of frequent contact with them. He had no history of exposure to other known risk factors in the 14 days prior to the onset of symptoms. The patient passed away on 19 September. Contact tracing of household and healthcare contacts is ongoing for this case.
This is the fourth MERS case reported from Kuwait since first seen in 2012.
Typical MERS symptoms include fever, cough and shortness of breath. Pneumonia is common, but not always present. Gastrointestinal symptoms, including diarrhea, have also been reported. Approximately 36% of reported patients with MERS have died.
Globally, WHO has been notified of 1,570 laboratory-confirmed cases of infection with MERS-CoV, including at least 555 related deaths.