According to the National IHR of Saudi Arabia, there has been a reported 18 additional cases of MERS (Middle East Respiratory Syndrome) between 23 February and 16 March 2017. This outbreak started in haemodialysis unit in a Saudi Arabian hospital, but no details were stated. 
We will take you through a guide to help you better understand this disease, however no need to worry as you will get the best tips from Dettol to protect your family!
So what is MERS exactly? What are its symptoms and how can it be treated?
By definition, MERS or Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus is a viral respiratory disease from the corona virus family, and it was first reported in Saudi Arabia in 2012. It is said that MERS travels with camels, and is spread when people are in close contact or caring for an infected person. Since its first outbreak in 2012, 1935 cases have been reported, among which 690 cases resulted in death.
The infection is transmitted through: 
- Contact between camels and humans.
- Respiratory secretions from person to another.
According to several infected people, MERS symptoms are somewhat like flu, however more intense and accompanied by:
- Dry cough
- Shortness of breath
- Gastrointestinal disorders (Not in all cases)
These symptoms can sometimes be mistaken for an ordinary flu, but they should not be overlooked at as it can lead to pneumonia and sometimes kidney failure.  As it seems the virus is more severe to people suffering from chronic diseases like diabetes, cancer and chronic lung disease, or individuals with weak immune systems and older people.
Up until now, there are still no direct treatment for this virus, and since identifying the MERS patients at an early stage is still impossible, prevention and precaution should always be present whether you are working in healthcare, or just keen on protecting your family and loved ones. Here are the key points:
- Avoid contact with eyes, nose or mouth when in public places.
- Keep distance from sick people.
- Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when coughing or sneezing, and make sure to throw them and clean your hands instantly.
However, one main prevention way is disinfection. Seeing the fact that it is a viral disease, making sure you live in a bacteria free environment is the best prevention way.
- Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water. Use an anti-bacterial hand wash like Dettol Antibacterial Original Liquid Hand wash if at home, or an alcohol based hand sanitizer when on the road like Dettol Instant Hand Sanitizers, and make sure you rub your hands for at least 20 seconds.
- Clean and disinfect the house surfaces, especially in cases of sickness with Dettol Antiseptic Liquid. Disinfecting the surface is a major part in prevention as they hold the most dangerous bacteria. With people coming in and out of your house, your family might be at risk. Use Dettol’s versatile antiseptic liquid to clean all surfaces such as doorknobs, kitchen surfaces, or any other common ground material.
If you live in the Arabian Peninsula, protect yourself and your family from this disease, and if any symptoms occur visit the nearest healthcare center to get the right precaution.