04 Jul 2014, BioSpectrum Bureau , BioSpectrum
Singapore: The World Health Organization has said that the number of MERS cases were reducing, compared to the statistics in months earlier this year.
WHO assistant director-general, Dr Keiji Fukuda said that MERS cases could have been prevented if the etiology and mode of transmission of the virus was understood. He noted that the WHO was still in dark about how the virus spread in the community.
Dr Fukuda said that scientists were striving hard to stop the dangerous virus from spreading into a pandemic. He said, "Fatality rate of the virus was 40 percent-much higher-than-normal fatality rate for a virus."
Dr Fukuda emphasized that though Saudi Arabia had improved its surveillance against MERS, more efforts were needed ahead of the Muslim pilgrimage season, when millions travel to Saudi Arabia.
He added that Haj always carried the potential to ‘bring-in' or ‘carry-out' diseases and epidemics, hence pilgrims with underlying medical problems must be cautious of the MERS virus.