independent

Sunday 20 April 2014

Virus patient dies in hospital

Another death from SARS-like virus in Saudi Arabia

One of three family members struck down by a Sars-like virus has died in hospital, health protection officials have said.

The unnamed man, part of a "cluster" of three novel coronavirus cases linked to the same family, died at the weekend in the critical care unit of Birmingham's Queen Elizabeth Hospital.

The Health Protection Agency (HPA) said a relative of the deceased, a man who is known to have made recent visits to Saudi Arabia and Pakistan, was still receiving treatment at Manchester's Wythenshawe Hospital.

Meanwhile, a third family member who contracted the new virus has recovered after treatment.

News that a patient had died from the virus was initially confirmed by the Queen Elizabeth Hospital, which said it had been treating him as an out-patient for a long-term, complex and unrelated health condition.

A statement issued by the NHS Trust which runs the hospital added: "The patient was immuno-compromised and is believed to have contracted the virus from a relative who is being treated for the condition in a Manchester hospital."

The HPA said the man who died and another of the UK cases had no recent history of foreign travel, suggesting that transmission had occurred in Britain.

A spokesman for the HPA said: "One person has sadly died. This patient had an underlying condition that may have made them more susceptible to respiratory infections.

"The first patient in this cluster, who had recent travel history to Saudi Arabia and Pakistan, is still receiving treatment. The third case, who had a mild illness, has recovered."

Since September 2012, when an earlier case of novel coronavirus was diagnosed in the UK, there have been a total of 12 confirmed cases globally, with six deaths.

Press Association

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