Official: Lebanon detects its first MERS case

The Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) coronavirus is seen in an undated transmission electron micrograph from the National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID).

Lebanon’s health ministry confirmed on Thursday that it has detected the first known case of the MERS coronavirus in the country.

“We can confirm that first coronavirus case was detected at one of the Lebanese hospitals but we cannot disclose the name of the hospital at the moment,” the spokesperson, who spoke on condition of anonymity, told The Daily Star.

Lebanon has worked to prevent the disease reaching the country, after it spread from Saudi Arabia to the UAE and Egypt.

Prior to the detection, Lebanon’s health minister gave an order to activate scanners to detect cases of the virus among travelers arriving at Beirut airport.

The minister, Wael Abu Faour, said the scanning devices are now all installed at the airport.