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Medical News & Perspectives
June 4, 2014

First US MERS-CoV Cases Underscore Need for Preparedness

JAMA. 2014;311(21):2160-2161. doi:10.1001/jama.2014.6019

Confirmation of the first 3 US cases of Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) infection highlighted the importance of preparedness plans and infection control policies for hospitals and other facilities in dealing with a potentially dangerous infectious disease.

The first patient presented to Community Hospital in Munster, Indiana, on April 28 with shortness of breath, cough, and fever—symptoms typical of MERS-CoV. The patient, who reportedly worked in health care in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, had traveled from Riyadh to Chicago via London’s Heathrow airport and then took a bus to Indiana. Hospital physicians suspected the infection because of the patient’s travel history to Saudi Arabia. .

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