Following the recent surge of Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) cases in Saudi Arabia, which hit 900 cases since 2012 recently, has prompted a team of experts from the World Health Organization (WHO), the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) and Institut Pasteur, France to hold a joint mission to make recommendations for improving the surveillance, prevention and control of the virus.
Members of the joint mission held discussions with high-level representatives from the Ministry of Health, visited the Command and Control Centre that has been leading all activities related to the control of the MERS-CoV, and toured the emergency and isolation facilities of the Prince Mohammed Bin Abdulaziz Hospital. Government officials and the WHO-led mission shared their concern about the rising number of MERS-CoV cases in recent weeks and in particular in health care facilities.
“The Kingdom did a lot to control the MERS-CoV. We want to hear WHO experts’ feedback on the Kingdom’s progress but also where we can improve. The government is fully committed to implementing the right control and prevention measures and also to funding any activities needed to control this disease,” said Ahmed Bin Aqeel Al Khateeb, the Saudi Arabian Health Minister.
Read the rest of the WHO statement HERE