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Deputy Health Minister Doctor Ziad Memish

Cases of hepatitis B and C hit 325 million: WHO

GENEVA: An estimated 325 million people are living with hepatitis B or C and few are aware of their condition, with death tolls from the viruses rising, the UN said on Friday. The World Health Organization's latest hepatitis report identifies the condition as a grave public health threat that needs an "urgent response." Hepatitis killed 1.34 million people in 2015, a toll roughly in-line with HIV and tuberculosis. But in contrast to HIV and TB, hepatitis deaths are increasing, WHO said, recording a 22 percent…

Saudi Arabia sacks minister criticized over handling of MERS

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia has sacked Deputy Health Minister Ziad Memish who has been criticized by some international scientists over his handling of the deadly MERS virus that has infected 575 people in the kingdom and spread around the world. Memish was a key figure in Saudi Arabia's efforts to contain the spread of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS), a virus that causes coughing, fever and sometimes fatal pneumonia. It has killed 190 people in Saudi Arabia since it was identified two years ago and cases have been found…