Doctors in the Kansas City area are on alert for patients who might be infected with a very serious illness for which there is no immunization or treatment. Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) is a viral respiratory illness that is new to humans. It was first reported in Saudi Arabia in 2012 and has since spread to other countries, including The United States. Most people infected with MERS-Co-V developed severe respiratory illness, including fever, cough, and shortness of breath. Many of them have died.
Public health officials have noted that anywhere from 1,500 to 5,000 people from the Kansas City area recently traveled to Saudi Arabia for a pilgrimage to Mecca, at a time the disease was active in that region.
In the video, Dr. Lee Norman, chief medical officer at The University of Kansas Hospital, explains the disease, its symptoms, how it’s spread and how to keep it from spreading, and the role camels play in the spread of the disease.