Effective screening helps check spread of coronavirus



RIYADH: ABDUL HAMID AL-ANSARI

Published — Monday 1 July 2013

Last update 1 July 2013 6:25 am

| نسخة PDF Print News | A A

The effective medical surveillance system put in place by the Ministry of Health at every border outlet in the Kingdom has helped prevent and control the spread of coronavirus.
Khaled Al-Merghalani, the ministry’s spokesman, said competent medical authorities were screening pilgrims and visitors who entered the Kingdom, and any person showing any symptom of the virus as defined by the World Health Organization (WHO) was being examined through medical tests.
As per the directions of the national scientific committee, the authorities also ensure that all visitors comply with health requirements, including medical documents and proof of vaccination.
Ziad Memesh, undersecretary at the ministry, expressed concern about visitors streaming in from countries that lacked advanced medical facilities. “We don’t really know if the virus is already spreading in their countries,” he said.
Speaking on the sidelines of an international conference on prevention and infection control in Geneva recently, he denied that the Health Ministry was considering restricting the number of pilgrims to Saudi Arabia as a precautionary measure to check the spread of the virus.
“We are capable of monitoring and handling the situation, but there are countries which are not even looking into the matter because of lack of expertise,” he said.
Al-Merghalani had earlier stated that the ministry was making extensive arrangements to check the spread of the virus or its transmission through pilgrims and foreign visitors. “The longtime experience of Saudi medical authorities to deal with such mass visits makes them competent to handle such situations,” he said. Medical experts at the conference expressed concern at the spread of the virus, particularly in view of the upcoming pilgrimage season, and the limited information available on the virus.
“We must gather all inputs on the virus and the disease so that we can disseminate the information among countries that send pilgrims to Saudi Arabia,” said WHO Director-General Margaret Chan. Medical experts applauded the Kingdom’s efforts in controlling the spread of the virus. They said the country had seen through and overcome two seasons of epidemics that coincided with Haj seasons in the past 10 years — SARs in 2003 and H1N1 in 2009.

What's happening around Saudi Arabia

JEDDAH: A Saudi citizen was killed in shelling fired across the border from Yemen into the southwest of Saudi Arabia on Sunday, local media reported.A shell fell on a house around dawn in Najran province, civil defense department spokesman Ali bin Om...
JEDDAH: Female voters in Al-Ahsa have urged the authorities handling the municipal elections to drop the condition of presenting the national identity card while enrolling themselves in the voters’ list. Some women in Madinah too have appealed for mo...
JEDDAH: After the recent incident of a rat eating from a bowl at a well-known food outlet in a Jeddah mall came to light, residents have called for food hygiene ratings of restaurants and roadside eateries across the city.Although the municipality wo...
JEDDAH: A muezzin (one who recites the Adhaan) of a Riyadh mosque recently sprung a surprise in the Austrian tourist town of Zell am See by his Adhaan after taking permission from members of a musical band.Social media is abuzz with the news and vide...
RIYADH: A Sri Lankan national, who works as a cleaner in the Kingdom, was commended and rewarded by the Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage (SCTNH) for returning a bag containing gold to its owner.“Prince Sultan bin Salman, president o...
RIYADH: Bangladesh State Minister for Foreign Affairs Mohammed Shahriar Alam arrived in Jeddah on Sunday to meet with his Saudi counterpart Nizar Madani on Monday.On arrival at the royal terminal, the minister was received by Director General of the...
RIYADH: A report of the Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage predicts the rate of growth in job opportunities in the country's tourism sector between 2010 and 2020 will be 10 percent a year as compared to a global growth rate of 2.5 per...
JEDDAH: Two million meningitis vaccines have been distributed among health centers in 20 governorates and provinces across the Kingdom for domestic Haj pilgrims.It is mandatory for all pilgrims to be vaccinated against meningitis and for those coming...
JEDDAH: The Makkah governorate has announced four new road projects linking Makkah and Jeddah. The new roads will facilitate smoother and faster travel between the cities.An estimated 35 million people will benefit from the projects, which will inclu...
JEDDAH: A major disaster is waiting to happen in the fish market of Madinah because of the callous attitude of traders toward handling of gas cylinders. A visit to the market presents a dreadful picture of cylinders kept on top of each other without...
JEDDAH: Information and Culture Minister Adel Al-Toraifi has approved the appointment of Khalid Bo-Ali as editor in chief of the Eastern Province-based Alsharq Arabic newspaper. He was nominated for the post by the board of directors of the newspaper...
JEDDAH: Jamil Farsi, head of the Gold and Jewelry Committee at the Jeddah Chamber of Commerce and Industry (JCCI), says he expects 3,000 job opportunities to be created for Saudi women in the jewelry design and gold sector across the Kingdom, with ab...
JEDDAH: More than 50 visually challenged people successfully performed Umrah with the help of the Ebsar Foundation for the Visually Impaired and the Ambassadors of Volunteers organization under their program “Umrah for the visually impaired,” which w...
JEDDAH: Although the Ministry of Labor is opening its doors to receive complaints from private sector employees, many Saudi females employed in cosmetic and perfume shops in Madinah are not making complaints about being overworked due to fear of losi...
JEDDAH: Health Minister Dr. Khaled Al-Falih is set to increase the number of beds in all private sector hospitals, as per new implementation regulations adopted this year.The move will help address the problem of delays in public sector projects, as...

Stay Connected

Facebook