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Middle East virus, MERS, called ‘threat to the entire world’
Question of the Day
A respiratory illness that is sweeping the Middle East, infecting dozens and killing at least 30, is a global threat that must be contained, medical experts said.
“We understand too little about this virus when viewed against the magnitude of its potential threat. Any new disease that is emerging faster than our understanding is never under control,” said Dr. Margaret Chan, the head of the World Health Organization, in remarks this week reported by The New York Daily News. “These are alarm bells, and we must respond. The novel coronavirus is not a problem that any single affected country can keep to itself or manage all by itself. The [virus] is a threat to the entire world.”
The virus was identified at a health clinic in Saudi Arabia when 10 of 22 people who were admitted for similar symptoms, and then diagnosed with MERS, died.
Medical experts have yet to track the source of the virus, but believe it originated in animals. They have no vaccine, and 50 percent of those who are infected have died, the Daily News reported.
A similarly alarming virus a decade ago, SARS, killed 774 and left another 8,000 ill, the Daily News reported.
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About the Author
Cheryl Chumley is a continuous news writer for The Washington Times. Previously, she was part of the start-up team for The Washington Times’ digital aggregation product, Times247. She’s also a 2008-2009 Robert Novak journalism fellow with The Phillips Foundation. She can be reached at email@example.com.
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