First proof of patient-to-nurse infection of coronavirus, WHO says

May 15, 2013

Two Saudi health workers have contracted the deadly coronavirus from patients, marking the first evidence of transmission in a hospital setting, the World Health Organization said Wednesday.

"This is the first time health care workers have been diagnosed with nCoV (novel ) infection after exposure to patients," the WHO said in a statement.

The two health care workers were among six new cases announced by the Saudi health ministry on Tuesday.

The UN's health body said that while other health care workers had contracted the deadly disease in Jordan, there had until now not been clear evidence that they had been infected by patients carrying the virus.

"This is the first time we have pretty hard and fast evidence of it," WHO spokesman Gregory Haertl explained to AFP.

" that provide care for patients with suspected nCoV infection should take appropriate measures to decrease the risk of transmission of the virus to other patients and ," the agency said.

WHO said one of the new patients with laboratory-confirmed nCoV was a 45-year-old man who became ill on May 2, and who was currently in a critical condition.

The second patient was a 43-year-old woman with a coexisting health condition, who became ill on May 8 and was in a stable condition.

" are advised to be vigilant among recent travellers returning from areas affected by the virus who develop SARI," or severe , WHO said.

The organisation however continued to say travel restrictions and special screening was not yet called for to limit the spread of the virus.

Since last September, WHO says it has been informed of a global total of 40 laboratory confirmed cases of the virus, including 20 deaths.

While the virus has been deadliest in Saudi Arabia, which now counts 30 infections, half of them fatal, cases have also been reported in Jordan, Qatar, Germany, Britain and France, where two patients are now in hospital in the northern city of Lille.

Explore further: Three new cases of SARS-like virus in Saudi Arabia

Related Stories

Second case of deadly SARS-like virus in France

May 12, 2013

French health authorities said early Sunday that a second person had contracted a deadly new SARS-like virus, after sharing a hospital ward with the first victim identified in the country.

Saudi detects four new SARS-like cases

May 14, 2013

Four more cases of the deadly coronavirus have been detected in Saudi Arabia, the health ministry said, raising the number of people infected from the SARS-like virus in the kingdom to 28, including 15 fatalities.

WHO calls on France to stay calm amid SARS-like virus scare

May 14, 2013

The World Health Organisation on Monday called on people in France, where two confirmed cases of the new SARS-like virus were recorded at the weekend, to stay calm and not overburden hospitals for fear of the deadly virus ...

Saudi detects six new SARS-like cases

May 14, 2013

Saudi Arabia has detected six new cases of the deadly coronavirus, the health ministry said, raising the number of people infected from the SARS-like virus in the kingdom to 30, half of them fatalities.

Recommended for you

Monkeys in Asia harbor virus from humans, other species

November 19, 2015

When it comes to spreading viruses, bats are thought to be among the worst. Now a new study of nearly 900 nonhuman primates in Bangladesh and Cambodia shows that macaques harbor more diverse astroviruses, which can cause ...

One-step test for hepatitis C virus infection developed

November 14, 2015

UC Irvine Health researchers have developed a cost-effective one-step test that screens, detects and confirms hepatitis C virus (HCV) infections. Dr. Ke-Qin Hu, director of hepatology services, will present findings at the ...

Computer model reveals deadly route of Ebola outbreak

November 10, 2015

Using a novel statistical model, a research team led by Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health mapped the spread of the 2014-2015 Ebola outbreak in Sierra Leone, providing the most detailed picture to date ...


Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.