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Kuwait: Govt confirms first case of deadly MERS virus

last update: November 13, 16:07

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Kuwait City, 13 Nov. (AKI) - Kuwait's health ministry on Wednesday confirmed the country's first case of the deadly MERS coronavirus in a 47-year-old man, the official Kuna news agency reported.

"The first case of coronavirus has been discovered in the country for a citizen who was moved to the Infectious Diseases Hospital in a critical condition," Kuna quoted the health ministry as saying.

The patient suffered from diabetes and high blood pressure, Kuna and other reports from the region said, without stating his identity, laboratory that confirmed he had MERS or or how he caught it.

The doctor who diagnosed MERS in the patient has also been infected, daily al-Rai reported, citing unnamed medical sources.

Kuwait the fifth state in the Gulf to report cases of MERS, which has killed already killed 64 people worldwide, the majority in Saudi Arabia.

Like the SARS virus that broke in Asia in 2003, it appears to cause a lung infection, high temperature and breathing difficulties.

There have been 153 confirmed cases of MERS worldwide, including the 64 deaths, the World Health Organisation said on its website on Monday.

In August, researchers pointed to Arabian camels as possible hosts of the virus, which is considered a deadlier but less-transmissible 'cousin' of SARS.

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