A deadly new virus warning was issued by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention this week, prompted by more than a dozen reported cases of the illness — eight of which resulted in death.
Known as a coronavirus, the deadly illness belongs to the family of viruses responsible for common colds and the dangerous Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS). Previously unseen in humans, the first confirmed case of the virus was reported in September 2012.
As of March 2013, the World Health Organization has confirmed 14 cases of coronavirus in patients from Britain and the Arabian Peninsula. The British cases were all spread within a single family following one member’s visit to the Middle East, where he is believed to have contracted the illness.
“In the UK, an infected man likely spread the virus to two family members,” the CDC states. “He had recently traveled to Pakistan and Saudi Arabia and got sick before returning to the UK.” The man’s son, one of the family members who was infected, died last month.
On Thursday the CDC released its Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report which states that cases of the deadly coronavirus have yet to surface in the United States.
However, the worldwide outbreak of the deadly new virus prompted a warning by the CDC to US health officials in an effort to prevent the contraction and spread of the illness.
As part of its warning, the CDC strongly urges individuals traveling to countries in or near the Arabian Peninsula to seek medical attention if they develop lower respiratory illness symptoms or fever within a 10 day period after their visit.
To date, eight fatalities associated with confirmed cases of the coronavirus have been reported worldwide. Five of the deaths were confirmed in Saudi Arabia, one in Britain, and two in Jordan, according to the World Health Organization.
While the origin of the deadly new virus is speculated to be of animal nature, the CDC warning states that the coronavirus is thought to be contracted through person-to-person contact.
Individuals infected with the new coronavirus were reportedly shown to develop severe acute respiratory illness with symptoms described as shortness of breath, cough, and fever.
For further details about the deadly new virus and the warning issued this week can be found at the official Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website.