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Malaysia quarantines 15 people over respiratory disease

Kuala Lumpur - Malaysia has quarantined 15 people who came into contact with a man who died from the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome-coronavirus (MERS-CoV) disease, health officials said Friday.

Health Minister S Subramaniam said 15 people were quarantined in the southern state of Johor where the victim lived.

He said health authorities were closely monitoring their condition.

Subramaniam said the patient who died arrived in Malaysia on March 29 after a pilgrimage to Mecca.

On April 8 and 9 he developed a fever, cough, and had difficulty breathing. He was admitted to the hospital a day later, but died on April 13.

"Investigations revealed that the cause of death is severe pneumonia secondary to MERS-CoV," he said.

Subramaniam said health workers were tracing people who flew on a Turkish Airlines flight from Jeddah to Istanbul to Kuala Lumpur on March 29 so they can undergo medical screening.

The disease was first detected in the Middle East in 2012, but researchers have yet to determine its cause. The World Health Organization has recorded 238 cases of the disease and 92 deaths.

DPA


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