DUBAI: The Saudi Minister of Health, Tawfiq Al-Rabiah confirmed that several precautionary measures had been implemented to address the new coronavirus.
The ministry has increased monitoring and control procedures for flights coming directly from China.
Passengers coming from China through indirect flights are being contained and having their vitals inspected in coordination with the Civil Aviation Authority.
“No cases of infection with the new coronavirus have been recorded in the Kingdom yet,” he added, explaining that coronavirus was an airborne virus transmitted by coughing.
The National Center for Disease Prevention and Control (NCDC) has prepared a health guide to deal with suspected cases. The NCDC provided laboratory tests, set up the mechanism for collecting and transferring sample to NCDC’s national laboratory and issued advice to passengers going to areas where the disease has appeared.
The ministry’s Command and Control Center took precautionary measures as soon as the virus was discovered in China, the minister said.
The ministry has also implemented the international health regulations and coordinated with the relevant authorities to deal with this situation and address it.
The precautionary measures included closely monitoring the epidemiological situation with the World Health Organization (WHO) and other available sources and coordinating with the Civil Aviation Authority in assessing the direct and indirect traffic from and to China in order to provide information for people planning to visit affected areas, monitor those arriving from them, implement the health assessment at entry points and follow up on them to ensure their safety,” Al-Rabiah pointed out.
The Command and Control center had previously explained that the common symptoms of infection are acute respiratory ones such as fever, coughing, shortness of breath and difficulty breathing. In more severe cases, it can cause pneumonia or acute respiratory distress syndrome.