What Is MERS and How Can You Fight Against It?

Wednesday, 22 July 2015

MERS, or Middle Eastern Respiratory Syndrome, is a relatively new illness that was first reported in 2012 in Jordan — now it's travelling quickly and cases have been reported in several countries. In the same year cases of MERS popped up in the UK, Germany and Saudi Arabia. Since then, 26 countries across the globe have had reported cases of MERS, including France, Italy and even the United States.

What Does MERS Do?

The most common symptoms of MERS are a fever, coughing or shortness of breath. Some patients have been found to suffer from digestion issues such as diarrhoea. Severe cases of MERS lead to breathing failure, and can also cause kidney failure or septic shock. 4 out of every 10 patients who have contracted MERS have died.

Where Does MERS Come From?

Because the condition is relatively recent, doctors and medical scientists don’t know exactly where from the MERS-CoV virus (the virus that causes MERS) comes. However, it is known that it originated in the Arabian Peninsula (hence the name Middle Eastern Respiratory Syndrome) and it’s believed that it originated from contact with animals.

MERS can pass from person to person where there is close contact, for example living with someone with MERS or caring for them.

Who is at Risk from MERS?

Anyone can contract MERS given the right level of contact; however there are some people who are more at risk than others.

Those with weakened immune systems, people with chronic illnesses and elderly people are most at risk. These people tend to contract it easier and suffer more severe symptoms.

Additionally, hospital workers and other healthcare personnel are at an incredibly high risk of MERS infection because of their frequent contact with ill and sick people. In these cases the chance of contracting MERS is much higher and a great deal of care should be taken to help prevent an outbreak from happening.

What Can You Do to Prevent a MERS Outbreak?

Right now, there is no cure or vaccine against the MERS virus. As a result, hospital workers and people who are at risk of a MERS infection should ensure that they do everything they can to kill the virus before it spreads and can infect someone. The best way to do this is to use a product that is certified to kill MERS-CoV and sanitise work surfaces, hands and equipment. 

Medi9 has a  full suite of products that are 100% certified to kill the MERS-CoV virus. The Medi9 Antibacterial Sanitising Wipes are great for quickly and easily sanitising surfaces and the Medi9 Antibacterial Sanitising Hand Foam With Belt Clip is great for ensuring that your hands stay sanitised wherever you are. 

These products are designed for a variety of applications (for example use in the home as well as use in hospitals) and will stop the MERS virus dead. These are also certified to kill swine flu, MRSA and the norovirus, among many others.

Proper sanitisation is vitally important; just this year an outbreak of MERS happened in South Korea. 174 cases were confirmed, and every single one of those was connected to a healthcare facility where MERS patients were being treated.

By properly sanitising your working environment against the virus, whether you’re in an office or a hospital, you can help prevent a MERS outbreak and potentially save lives.

*Additional imagery for this blog has been provided by Medi9 and is used with their permission

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