Saudi Arabia Reports 2 Health Workers Infected With nCoV, Further Evidencing Person-To-Person Transmission
“Two health workers in Saudi Arabia have become infected with a potentially fatal new SARS-like virus [known as novel coronavirus, or nCoV,] after catching it from patients in their care — the first evidence of such transmission within a hospital, the World Health Organization said,” Reuters reports. “The health workers are a 45-year-old man, who became ill on May 2 and is currently in a critical condition, and a 43-year-old woman with a coexisting health condition, who fell ill on May 8 and is in a stable condition, the WHO said,” the news service writes (Kelland, 5/15). “[T]he virus has likely already spread person-to-person in some circumstances, including between patients [in the same hospital room] in France,” the Associated Press notes (Stobbe, 5/15). However, “‘[t]his is the first time health care workers have been diagnosed with nCoV (novel coronavirus) infection after exposure to patients,’ the WHO said in a statement,” according to Agence France-Presse/Channel News Asia (5/16).
In related news, “[a] group of coronavirus experts has published its proposal to name [the] new, deadly virus after the Middle East, the region where it originates,” Science Insider reports. “In a short paper published online [Wednesday] by the Journal of Virology, the Coronavirus Study Group (CSG), along with several other scientists, recommends calling the pathogen Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV),” the news service writes (Enserink, 5/15). “Since last September, WHO says it has been informed of a global total of 40 laboratory confirmed cases of the virus, including 20 deaths,” AFP notes (5/16).
The KFF Daily Global Health Policy Report summarized news and information on global health policy from hundreds of sources, from May 2009 through December 2020. All summaries are archived and available via search.