Jul 08, 2013
By Michael Kramer
A Canadian will be part of a special panel advising the World Health Organization on the new MERS coronavirus.
Teresa Tam is a top official of the Public Health Agency of Canada with years of experience in respiratory diseases and pandemic preparedness. Tam has more recently been branch head for the health security infrastructure branch. She’s one of 15 experts from around the world who have been named to the W.H.O.’s so-called emergency committee, which will hold its first teleconference tomorrow. The group will assess the evolving situation and offer the W.H.O. its ideas on how to handle the outbreak, which to date has claimed at least 44 lives. The first order of business will be to decide whether the outbreak qualifies as a public health emergency of international concern under the provisions of a global health treaty. To date -Saudi Arabia has recorded the most MERS cases.