More on MERS

MERS is the SARS-related virus that's killing people in the Middle East — and the government of Saudi Arabia, where most of the outbreak is happening, has been reticent about releasing information on infections and deaths. Now, the government of Jordan has admitted that the earliest recorded outbreak, which happened back in April of 2012, actually infected at least 10 people, rather than the previously reported two. It sounds like this revelation was the result of an internal re-evaluation of previous records, rather than the suppression of something the government had long known. But it gives you a good idea of how bad the epidemiological information on MERS is right now, and how little we know about it.


  1. Another closed government that hypocritically spies on its own people?  What could possibly go wrong?

    1. It really isn’t funny, and I don’t mean to make light of a terrible disease.  But I still feel like I must leave this here:

  2. A significant issue will be the pilgrimages to Saudi Arabia in July, Aug (the name of which escapes me, but it is an end of ramadan thing) and the hajj in October. Those carry the potential to spread MERS far and wide. But really MERS does not seem to be particularly easy to spread person to person; it happens, but it seems to need really close and prolonged contact, like immediate family or health care workers. Hopefully we will know a lot more about it before it becomes more of a major problem.

    1. Hajj and a few mutations would be an excellent way of shedding population (reducing human carbon footprint :-), much like a little ferret-sneezing flu pandemic.  We are all one plane trip away from chinese duckpig farms.

      Enjoy your industrial-agriculture-based population boom while you can!  Famine plague and war are kinda inevitable the way things are going.

      Malthus *always* wins, since people are too stupid for birth control.

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