Thursday, May 29, 2014

MERS in the UAE

I'm not sure how much MERS is in the news outside of this region. It's a sort of Saudi SARS, but a completely different virus. MERS stands for Middle East Respiratory Syndrome. The first cases were reported in Saudi Arabia, and most cases since then have also been in Saudi Arabia, but there have now been cases in the rest of the Gulf (except Bahrain) as well as Jordan and Lebanon (and I think two cases in the US?).

The university health clinic sent out a Health Authority of Abu Dhabi pamphlet about MERS. I found it informative and interesting, and I thought you might like to see a few pages from it.

I love the helpful information, cloaked in the visual norms of the UAE. I saw these images posted on the wall at the hospital a few weeks ago, too.

Note the recommended protections to be taken at Hajj or Umra. Hajj will fall in the beginning of October this year. If I recall correctly, there has always been increased attention on the various sicknesses people spread/bring back home with them to the UAE after Hajj, so this year should be even more intense.

The concern about camel meat/milk is completely legitimate in this country!

Again, I love the graphic design here of a muhajjiba as a helpful medical authority.
Very culturally on-point.

More Hajj/Umrah concerns. This is a big deal because restrictions on travel to Saudi mean restrictions on Muslims trying to fulfill one of the pillars of their religion.

And finally, social media misinformation is addressed.

Anyway, this is what's going on in the UAE these days.

6 comments:

Emily Tree said...

There have been 2 deaths in the US from this. One was from a healthcare worker traveling to Florida from the UAE. The pamphlet is quite funny as well as informative. I've taken care of ICU patients with H1N1 Flu virus and what they're saying about MERS is quite serious. Stay safe!

Bridget said...

Yes, we are trying to be better about washing hands more, etc. At least we don't have plans to travel to Saudi Arabia anytime soon.

The news about two people in the US dying from this alarmed me, so I looked it up - I don't think they died, though there are two confirmed cases. Let's hope it runs its course soon without a lot of additional cases!

Jen said...

The first human-to-human transmission in the US happened last week-ish in Indiana. Our news is peppered with MERS stuff, but not overtly so. (Brian Williams' interview with Edward Snowden aired last night, so....um.....NBC is wall-to-wall #traitor or #patriot? I'd like to stab my eyes out, now.)

ANYWAY....NPR is doing great MERS coverage, including interviews with camel farmers who are demonstrating their trust in their animals by kissing them right during the interview! It was kind of adorable. The camel farmers, I mean. I don't tend to enjoy kissing animals of any kind. (Though, does bring to mind the West Wing a-camel-is-a-horse-decided-by-committee reference, which makes me happy.)

Annnnnnnnnnnnd, scene.

Liz Johnson said...

YES. The two cases were in Indiana! I was shocked! But I just figured they were only covering it since it was local - I haven't seen anything about it in Michigan. Maybe because they're too busy covering all of the triple homicides in Flint...

Susanne said...

I've heard about it here in NC some.

Emily Tree said...

They reported the first case in Indiana and the second case in Florida. There were 500 people exposed by the second case and the news has dwindled as more important news stories take over in the US.

http://www.cidrap.umn.edu/news-perspective/2014/05/us-detects-2nd-mers-case-saudi-arabia-has-18-more

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