A drill was organised at Children’s Hospital 1 in Ho Chi Minh City to build the capacity of health workers to cope with the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV).

The scenario played out what doctors and nurses should do when discovering a suspected case.

Doctor Dinh Tan Phuong said suspected cases are to be examined right in the ambulance. If possible symptoms of the disease are found, the patient is to be isolated immediately. Family members must use protective equipment when visiting the patient and they will be under strict health care supervision, he said.

Currently, a steering committee on MERS-CoV prevention and control has been set up at each of the four local hospitals assigned to receive and treat MERS-CoV patients, which are Cho Ray, the Hospital for Tropical Diseases and Children’s Hospitals 1 and 2.

The hospitals have also held training courses for their staff and healthcare workers in other medical establishments on preventing the spread of the virus while preparing facilities and protective equipment to respond to any outbreaks.

So far, no cases have been reported in the city.

MERS-CoV, first reported in Saudi Arabia in 2012, belongs to a family of corona viruses including SARS, which haunted Asia in 2003. The deadly virus is raging through the Republic of Korea , which, as of June 24, had claimed 29 lives and infected 151 people.-VNA