Via Arab News: Saudi man suspected of contracting Ebola dies. Unlike most MERS cases, the victim is named. Excerpt:
The Saudi man who was suspected of being infected with the Ebola virus died on Wednesday in Jeddah, the Ministry of Health (MOH) said.
Ibrahim Al-lZahrani, a businessman in his 40s, passed away at the King Fahd Hospital, where he was admitted Monday night after showing symptoms of viral hemorrhagic fever.
Preliminary testing at a specialized laboratory was negative for Dengue virus. Additional tests were carried out to determine if the source of the infection is yellow fever, Alkhumra or another virus.
The MOH has submitted samples of the patient to an international reference laboratory in the United States as recommended by the World Health Organization (WHO). Additional samples are being sent to an accredited laboratory in Germany.
Preparations for burial will be performed at the hospital in keeping with Islamic religious practices and international guidelines for patients suspected of having an infectious disease like Ebola.
MOH officials have been in direct and continuous contact with the family of the patient. Public health experts began retracing the patient’s travels upon notification of his symptoms and travel history. They are currently monitoring the people he came into contact with for any symptoms associated with viral hemorrhagic fever.
Saudi Arabia announced in April that it was not issuing visas for the 2014 Haj and Umrah to pilgrims from Sierra Leone, Liberia and Guinea due to these countries suffering from an Ebola outbreak. Medical workers are monitoring travelers at airports and seaports across the Kingdom.
Pilgrims from Ebola-endemic countries will be identified at disembarkation points in the Kingdom. The ministry has fielded special teams at air, land and sea entry points to identify pilgrims who are suffering from the disease.
The ministry has been carefully following online instructions issued by the WHO on the issue. The ministry also sporadically issues quarantine requirements to Saudi missions abroad.