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CDC Confirms MERS

By on May 4, 2014

On May 2, 2014, the first confirmed case of MERS-CoV was reported in a traveler to the United States.

This is the only confirmed case in the United States. CDC is working very quickly to investigate this first U.S. case of MERS and respond to minimize the spread of this virus. We expect to learn much more in the coming hours and days. We will share updated information through theCDC MERS website.

Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV) was first reported in 2012 in Saudi Arabia. It is different from any other coronavirus previously found in people. We don’t know where the virus came from or exactly how it spreads. However, it likely came from an animal source.

All reported cases to date have been linked to the Arabian Peninsula.

Most people infected with MERS-CoV developed severe respiratory illness with symptoms of fever, cough, and shortness of breath. About 30% of people with MERS have died. Most of the people who died had an underlying medical condition. Some infected people had mild symptoms or no symptoms at all.


Countries in the Arabian Peninsula with MERS Cases

  • Saudi Arabia
  • United Arab Emirates (UAE)
  • Qatar
  • Oman
  • Jordan
  • Kuwait

Countries with Travel-associated MERS Cases

  • United Kingdom (UK)
  • France
  • Tunisia
  • Italy
  • Malaysia
  • United States of America (USA)

A study, published in the journal Lancet Infectious Diseases, examined 47 cases of MERS infections.  Of these 47 cases, 28 patients died, which was an alarming 60 percent mortality rate.

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