Pre­ven­tion meth­ods ini­ti­ated over MERS fears

The China Post - - LOCAL - BY SUN HSIN- HSUAN

Gov­ern­ment agen­cies are ac­tively pre­par­ing MERS pre­ven­tion drills and dis­ease con­trol mea­sures in case in­fec­tion hits the na­tion, as the deadly re­s­pi­ra­tory ill­ness spread rapidly in South Korea re­cently, ac­cord­ing to the Tai­wan Cen­ters for Dis­ease Con­trol (CDC, ).

Within a cou­ple of days, MERS has caused four deaths in South Korea, and the num­ber of pa­tients is soar­ing week by week. The con­ta­gious virus seemed to be get­ting out of con­trol, cast­ing panic and fear in neigh­bor­ing coun­tries. On June 5, Pres­i­dent Ma Ying-jeou (

) or­dered that sev­eral pre­ven­tion mea­sures be put into ac­tion, de­mand­ing proac­tive re­sponses be made at once at both cen­tral and lo­cal lev­els.

The Fire Bureau

of Hs­inchu City listed off prepa­ra­tions on re­sponse mea­sures yes­ter­day, mak­ing Hs­inchu among the first cities to do so along with Taichung, Taipei, and New Taipei City, stor­ing N95 sur­gi­cal masks, gloves, Level-C protective suits and wa­ter­proof suits. Of­fi­cials con­tinue to re­mind cit­i­zens to proac­tively and ac­cu­rately re­port any MERS symptoms, es­pe­cially those hav­ing trav­eled to South Korea, China or the Mid­dle East in the past 14 days.

Pam­phlets Dis­trib­uted to Flight

Pas­sen­gers from June 4

Re­gard­ing con­trol and mon­i­tor­ing at the na­tion’s ports of en­try, the CDC has planned to dis­trib­ute MERS Health Ad­vice pam­phlets to all pas­sen­gers on flights ar­riv­ing in Tai­wan from South Korea, said CDC of­fi­cials.

The first batch of 220,000 pam- phlets was pub­lished and sent to the Civil Aero­nau­tics Ad­min­is­tra­tion ( ) for dis­tri­bu­tion to air­line com­pa­nies, of­fi­cials said. So far, both China Air­lines and EVA Air have re­ceived the pam­phlets and started to dis­trib­ute them to pas­sen­gers on flights ar­riv­ing from South Korea, of­fi­cials said.

On June 5, South Korean health of­fi­cials an­nounced four more MERS cases, mak­ing at least 41 di­ag­noses so far, in­clud­ing four deaths. In­dex, sec­ondary and ter­tiary in­fec­tions have been con­firmed.

Ac­cord­ing to the World Health Or­ga­ni­za­tion ( WHO), be­tween Septem­ber 2012 and June 3, 2015, a to­tal of 1,179 lab­o­ra­to­rycon­firmed cases of in­fec­tion with MERS, in­clud­ing 442 deaths, have been con­firmed. Thus far, MERS has been re­ported in 25 coun­tries, in­clud­ing Saudi Ara­bia, the UAE and Qatar. Cur­rently, the CDC has is­sued a Level 2 Alert for travel to Saudi Ara­bia and the Greater Seoul area, which con­sists of Seoul, In­cheon and the Gyeonggi re­gion.

Min­is­ter of Health and Wel­fare Chi­ang Been-huang ( ) vis­ited the des­ig­nated hos­pi­tals and in­spected how hos­pi­tals con­duct the “On-site MERS-CoV Pa­tient Man­age­ment Drill.” In ad­di­tion, Chi­ang also in­structed the other five des­ig­nated hos­pi­tals in Tai­wan and three other des­ig­nated hos­pi­tals on the off­shore is­lands to be pre­pared for man­ag­ing po­ten­tial MERS cases.

For more in­for­ma­tion, please visit the CDC web­site at http:// www.cdc.gov.tw, or call the toll­free Com­mu­ni­ca­ble Dis­ease Re­port­ing and Con­sul­ta­tion Hot­line, 1922 (or 0800-001922).

CNA

Agents of the Hs­inchu City Fire Bureau con­duct dis­in­fec­tion mea­sures yes­ter­day in light of a po­ten­tial MERS spread into the na­tion. As MERS virus in South Korea has been trans­mit­ting faster and more vi­ciously than ex­pected, gov­ern­ment agen­cies in the na­tion has begin con­duct­ing pre­ven­tion drills.

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