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Suspected MERS patient from Middle East quarantined at Nonthaburi institute

Jun 12. 2018
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By The Nation

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A suspected MERS patient from a Middle Eastern country has been quarantined at the Bamrasnaradura Infectious Diseases Institute in Nonthaburi, Disease Control Department director-general Suwanchai Wattanayingcharoenchai said on Tuesday.

The patient is an African man living in a Middle Eastern country, Suwanchai said. 

He was forwarded to the institute from a university hospital on Monday after his symptoms suggested that he might have caught MERS, or Middle East respiratory syndrome.

Suwanchai said the patient was currently diagnosed with lung infection, but his disease had yet to be checked and isolated by laboratories of the institute and the Medical Sciences Department, and it would therefore take some days before the results were known.

The department chief added that the man had also showed MERS symptoms while travelling by air to Thailand, so he could have spread the disease during his journey. 

The department has therefore sought cooperation from the airline to contact and monitor travellers who were on the same flight.

He said the man had travelled to Thailand with the intention of receiving treatment, so he might have realised that he had caught the MERS virus.

“Thailand has a reputation for treating MERS patients, so some patients travel here to receive treatment,” the director-general added.

Suwanchai said the countries from which such people set off should however have a system in place to prevent their citizens from departing if they have dangerous communicable diseases.

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