Bangalore: Haj returnee diagnosed with MERS

Bangalore: Haj returnee diagnosed with MERS

A passenger who returned to the City after Haj has been diagnosed with Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV), which, though rare in India, has killed 63 people globally.

Bangalore International Airport health officials directed the person to the Rajiv Gandhi University of Chest Diseases in the city after finding her ill.

Speaking to Deccan Herald, department of health and family welfare director Geetha Nyama Goudar said the patient was suspected of being affected and was coughing severely.

“Though she was permitted to go home, we have informed the authorities to keep a check,” she added.

Rajiv Gandhi University of Chest Diseases and SDS Tuberculosis Research Centre Director Dr Shashidhar Buggi said the patient was brought to hospital on Sunday afternoon and preliminary tests conducted.

“We have also taken the swabs and it will be sent to the National Institute for Mental Health and Neuro Sciences on Monday for examination” he said. He said the patient showed symptoms similar to those affected by the H1N1 virus. 

“Though the patient was advised to get admitted, there was refusal from their side to do so,” Dr Buggi added. The resident of Ananthapur initially complained of sore throat and also had fever. The patient was normal and the condition did not appear to be serious, he said.

Dr Ravi, senior Pathologist at NIMHANS explained that MERS was a very rare condition and not more than ten cases in the country have been suspected of the virus so far. “It is more prevalent in the Middle East countries,” he said.    

As of October 13, 2013, the World Health Organisation confirmed that 149 people have been affected by MERS worldwide, of which 63 have died.

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