Saudi health hub invests in new tech to fight MERS virus

King Fahad Medical City in Riyadh buys 12 portable disinfection systems to fight growing health threat
By Andy Sambidge
Sat 14 Jun 2014 01:28 AM

King Fahad Medical City has said it has bought 12 cutting edge portable disinfection systems to fight the growing threat of the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) which has caused dozens of deaths in the Gulf kingdom.

The Riyadh health hub said that while the immediate need is to combat MERS, the technology will kill all infection-causing pathogens in the environment, thereby reducing the probability of infections.

The technology, high intensity UV-C light, prevents the organism from reproducing, according to John Morrow, CEO of US based UV-C Technologies.

He said: "Studies have proven that manually disinfecting a hospital "room is approximately 50 percent effective.

Using our automated UV-C device, the kill rate of pathogens is 99.99 percent. Additionally, this high level disinfection is accomplished in approximately 15 minutes, thereby reducing hospital room turn over time."

The technology is used quite extensively in the United States as a means of controlling infections in hospitals, surgery centres, ambulances, off shore oil rigs and hotels.

Dr Mahmoud Al Yamany, CEO of King Fahad Medical City said: "KFMC is committed to providing a safe and healthy environment for patients, families, and employees. This new technology will greatly enhance the care given at KFMC and reduce the chance of infection from MERS or any other pathogen."

Last week, Saudi Arabia said that a review of health data had identified an additional 113 confirmed cases of the sometimes deadly MERS that had not been previously recorded, bringing the total to 688.

The death toll from the virus has been raised to 282 from 190, the statement, distributed by the Health Ministry via email, said.

The revised figures come from a re-examination of data since 2012, when MERS was identified, that started last month. Of the total, 53 patients were still being treated, while 353 had recovered, the statement said.

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