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World Health Organization declares that MERS is not a global emergency

By Angelica Stephens,

The World Health Organization met on Wednesday to discuss the increase of Middle Eastern Respiratory syndrome outbreaks around the World, and came to the conclusion that MERS is not a global emergency.

According to USA Today, while the disease has infected over 500 and caused 145 illness related deaths - with the majority of the outbreak cases being confirmed in the Middle East - Dr. Keiji Fukunda stated that there needs to be more proof in order to declare a global emergency.

The disease has been found in the U.S., Europe, Asia, and parts of Africa. The disease symptoms are similar to the common cold and flu. However, the virus can turn into something much worse such as pneumonia and kidney failure.

Dr. Mary Vearncombe, the doctor who helped with SARS outbreaks at Sunnybrook hospital in Toronto, said that the fatality rate is currently 27 percent for MERS. She stated that this should cause for concern, but luckily the virus doesn’t transmit well in a household with a contagious person, according to CBC News.

Several scientists fear that MERS will turn into a worldwide outbreak, like ts cousin, Severe Acute Respiratory Sydrome (SARS), did back in in 2003. SARS caused 8,000 cases and is linked to 800 deaths.

The WHO will conduct another meeting in the weeks to come to reevaluate the virus and to explore any new MERS cases.

 

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