Mike Coston has an excellent post today on his blog Avian Flu Diary: MERS, The Twitterverse & MOH Damage Control. Excerpt:
A sign of increasing concern among residents of Saudi Arabia is that Arabic social media – in particular twitter – has gone ballistic this morning over the MERS coronavirus.
I’m tracking about 30 new tweets a minute containing the word كورونا (`SK’ or `Corona’) coming across the transom, many with photos attached. Before Chrome can auto translate a batch, another 20 have arrived.
Many, of course, are re-tweets. A growing trend are tweets critical of the MOH. And some are suggesting there are `many more suspected’ cases being tested.
That, in itself, may not mean much given the epidemiological investigation - including the monitoring and testing of contacts of known cases - who could legitimately be called `suspected cases’.
Frankly, I’d be highly surprised (and very disappointed) if they weren’t testing a lot of people.
In many ways, the official response to the recent MERS cases is more interesting than the cases themselves: We're watching a healthcare system under a kind of self-chosen stress, and not holding up well.