MOH News
WHO Representative: The Coronavirus Situation Doesn't Cause Concern for World Countries So Far
18 February 2015
The Representative of the World Health Organization (WHO) in the Kingdom, Dr. Hassan Al-Bushra, affirmed that the situation of the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV) doesn't cause any concern for world countries and up to now it is under control, as the disease is still within limits and could not so far move from a person to another on a permanent basis.
 
He added that no vaccine has been discovered yet to treat the MERS-CoV and researches are still underway in this respect, adding that although the source of the virus is still unknown, camels are more likely to be the source of the virus. "However," Dr. Al- Bushra said, "no confirmation has been obtained yet on the source of the virus as the studies conducted during the last period are still analyzing data and so far no results have been released."
 
This came during the visit of Dr. Al-Bushra to the Ministry of Health (MOH) National Center for Media and Health Awareness within the context of the events of the awareness campaign on the MERS-CoV.
 
He said the cases of Coronavirus are expected to increase during the next two months (March and April), citing the last three years, when the number of cases was high during this period of the year, adding that the currently exerted efforts aim at raising awareness of the disease to delay the emergence of the virus in these two months, as well as reducing the number of cases and treating the infected cases before the development of complications that may lead to death, Allah forbids.
 
On the adequacy of the preventive measures being exerted to avoid hospital-acquired infections after the virus affected a number of health practitioners, Dr. Al-Bushra noted that the health sectors have exerted great efforts to avoid or reduce the hospital-acquired infections through provision of all capabilities for health practitioners as well as training and educating them.
 
"The avoidance of hospital-acquired infections," he said, "requires follow-up and control as it is connected with behaviors that may take a long time to adhere to." Dr. Al-Bushra stressed the importance of punishing those committing wrong behaviors, saying that such punishments will have an impact on modifying such behaviors, considering this step as a challenge facing the fight against the virus.
 
He added that the awareness efforts are now directed to children, considering them as a gateway to introduce health information to the family through a competition to be held at the regional level for school kids who will write a story of no more than 200 words about the Coronavirus. Dr. Al-Bushra said this move will contribute to spreading correct health information about the virus and means of protection among various segments, such as children and their families.
 
Moreover, Dr. Al-Bushra pointed out that the visit paid by a high level delegation of the WHO to the Kingdom these days, under the chairmanship of the Assistant Director-General of the WHO, in response to an invitation from His Excellency the Minister of Health, aims to get acquainted with the situation and gives necessary direction if there are points of weakness or deficiency in the efforts exerted to fight the virus.
 
He called on media outlets to focus on awareness of the disease and change misconceptions about it, adding that the awareness efforts require a strategy to communicate with all segments of the society, especially those living in remote areas and villages and non-Arabic speakers, in regard to the prevention of potential sources of the disease, especially those dealing with animals and those who cannot be reached via mass media and social networking websites. Dr. Al-Bushra considered this issue as one of the most important challenges facing the fight against the Coronavirus during this time.
 
It is noteworthy that the National Center for Media and Health Awareness will continue hosting a number of doctors and specialists from all health sectors during the period from 26/4/1436H to 6/5/1436H, via the Center's toll free number: 8002494444 and MOH's Twitter account: @saudimoh, to respond to callers' inquiries and answer their questions concerning the Coronavirus.
 
 
 



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