[Source: World Health Organization, full PDF document: (LINK). Abstract, edited.]


This protocol is an update of the protocol “Case‐control study to assess potential risk factors related to human illness caused by Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS‐CoV)” published on the WHO coronavirus website on 3 July 2013. It represents a significant revision resulting from multiple consultations with countries in the region that are experiencing indigenous transmission of the virus.

Case‐control study to assess potential risk factors related to human illness caused by Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS‐CoV), Version 5

Date: 28 March 2014


This document was adapted from a protocol developed by the Consortium for the Standardization for Influenza Seroepidemiology (CONSISE), a global partnership aiming to develop influenza investigation protocols and standardize seroepidemiology to inform public health policy for pandemic, zoonotic and seasonal influenza. This international partnership was created out of a need, identified during the 2009 H1N1 pandemic, for better (standardized, validated) seroepidemiological data to estimate infection attack rates and severity of the pandemic virus and to inform policy decisions.

More information on the CONSISE network can be found on their website: www.CONSISE.tghn.org.


This investigation will provide data to evaluate exposures and risk factors for human cases of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS‐CoV). This protocol outlines a case‐control study and the epidemiological methods to guide data collection to assess risk factors for illness caused by MERS coronavirus (MERS‐CoV) infection. Health care personnel and the evaluation of other contacts are addressed in a separate protocol. Comments for the user’s consideration are provided in purple text throughout the document.