The ongoing outbreak of Middle East respiratory syndrome -- MERS -- is still cause for concern, but to date it does not constitute a public health emergency, a panel of experts which advises the World Health Organization concluded Wednesday.

But in its fourth meeting on Middle East respiratory syndrome, the so-called emergency committee reiterated earlier calls for improved surveillance for the virus, bolstered laboratory capacity in vulnerable countries and timely sharing of information on cases.

The committee also stressed the need for a range of scientific studies, many of which scientists involved in MERS research wish had already been conducted.