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OFW back in North Cotabato exhibiting Mers-CoV symptoms

/ 10:45 AM February 14, 2015

COTABATO CITY – A 20-year-old girl from North Cotabato is currently under isolation at the Cotabato Regional and Medical Center (CRMC) here after she showed symptoms of the Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (Mers-CoV), the hospital’s chief confirmed Saturday.

Dr. Helen Yambao, CRMC chief of hospital, said the girl – whom she declined to identify – returned to the country on February 6 from Jordan where she worked as a domestic helper.

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Jordan is among countries in or near the Arabian Peninsula, where cases of Mers-CoV had been reported since 2012. The others were in Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates (UAE), Qatar, Oman, Kuwait, Yemen, Lebanon and Iran.

Yambao told reporters the girl was suffering from fever and cough so she voluntarily went to her town’s health center for checkup and medication.

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She was then sent to the CRMC, where she had been in isolation since Thursday.

Yambao said health workers had taken sputum and throat swab samples from the patient, which the CRMC sent to the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine (RITM) in Muntinlupa.

She said once the results come out and turn out positive, health workers will start tracking the people she had close contact with, including family members and rural health workers of the town she came from.

Mers-CoV’s incubation period is usually 5-6 days but can also range from 2-14 days and patients initially show mild symptoms akin to colds or no symptoms at all, according to the US Center for Disease Control.

The CDC further said that “3-4 out of every 10 people reported with Mers have died.”

However, it said that most of those who died “had an underlying medical condition” such as diabetes; cancer; and chronic lung, heart, and kidney disease.

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TAGS: Cotabato Regional and Medical Center, disease, Health, Helen Yambao, MERS-CoV, Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus, North Cotabato
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