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Phuket airport on high alert for MERS

Legacy Phuket Gazette

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PHUKET: Health officials at Phuket International Airport have ramped up efforts to identify any Phuket travellers who could be infected with the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome-Coronavirus (Mers-CoV).

The news follows Thailand’s second confirmed case of the virus on Saturday (story here).

Officials have been checking to ensure that airport screening is being strictly enforced.

“All staff members at the airport and affected airlines are on high alert for MERS and are checking all passengers to ensure that the virus does not spread,” said Phuket Provinical Health Office (PPHO) Chief Buncha Kakong.

The PPHO first rolled out its MERS protocol in July 2013. It included isolation procedures and patient tracking, in case a person was positively identified for symptoms of MERS (Special Report here).

Any travellers showing signs of influenza will be checked by medical officers at the Disease Control Center on arrival.

“Results take about six to eight hours,” said Dr Buncha. “They will then have to be monitored for possible infection for at least 14 days.”

— Sukawin Tanthavanich

 

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