Rhiza Labs FluTracker Forum

The place to discuss the flu
It is currently Mon Oct 16, 2017 11:42 pm

All times are UTC - 5 hours [ DST ]




Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 4 posts ] 
Author Message
PostPosted: Wed Jun 03, 2015 2:23 pm 
Offline

Joined: Wed Aug 19, 2009 10:42 am
Posts: 56044
Location: Pittsburgh, PA USA
South Korea MERS Patient Zero

_________________
www.twitter.com/hniman


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Wed Jun 03, 2015 2:23 pm 
Offline

Joined: Wed Aug 19, 2009 10:42 am
Posts: 56044
Location: Pittsburgh, PA USA
How MERS Patient Zero Inadvertently Sparked An Outbreak In South Korea
Reuters
Posted: 06/03/2015 8:44 am EDT Updated: 3 hours ago

By Ju-min Park

SEOUL, June 3 (Reuters) - Eight days after returning from a trip to the Middle East, a 68-year-old South Korean man developed a cough and fever.

He visited four health facilities seeking treatment and inadvertently triggered the biggest outbreak of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) outside that region, and what is verging on national panic at home.

President Park Geun-hye said on Wednesday everything must be done to stop the outbreak that has infected 29 other people, and killed two of them, in South Korea.

Hundreds of schools have locked their gates as the outbreak rekindled fears of a similar coronavirus that caused Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome in 2002, and killed about 800 people as it spread around the world.

The South Korean "index patient" was running a farm equipment company in Bahrain, according to a South Korean official, and had visited the region before returning on May 4.

More than half of South Korea's infections have been traced to a hospital in Pyeongtaek city, 65 km (40 miles) southwest of Seoul, where the man shared a room with another patient.

"The first patient was close to another person in the room and it appears that more infections took place as he went out of the room for checks, sneezing and coughing in the hall," said Kim Woo-joo, an infectious disease specialist advising the government.

Others became infected at three of the four health facilities the man visited, authorities said.

Officials have not identified the hospitals where MERS patients are being treated, but the Pyeongtaek facility has been shut and staff quarantined.

A nurse there said there was a lack of knowledge about the virus when the man was hospitalized. Health officials have said hospital staff had not been aware of the man's Middle East trip.

"There's little understanding. His visit to us was just unavoidable exposure to other people in the hospital," the nurse, who is in quarantine at home, said by telephone. She declined to be identified.

When the man was admitted at another hospital, where he was finally diagnosed, he at first only told staff he had visited Bahrain, which is not considered a MERS danger zone, health officials said.

In fact, the man had also been to Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, the countries with the most MERS cases and most of its approximately 440 fatalities.

"We reported him to the disease control center but because he went to Bahrain, which was all we knew at that time, his case dragged on," said an official at the hospital where he was diagnosed on May 20, who also declined to be identified.

"Too much time was spent finding him positive."

The person the index patient shared a room with at the Pyeongtaek hospital contracted MERS, as did that person's son, who had visited.

The son broke voluntary quarantine and traveled to Hong Kong and mainland China, where he was diagnosed with MERS. He is in hospital in China.

As of Wednesday, the index patient was on a respirator in a government-designated hospital. His 63-year-old wife also contracted the virus, but authorities said her condition had improved.

Authorities believe that other than the index patient, most of the MERS infections in South Korea came from the health facilities the index patient visited. (Additional reporting by Meeyoung Cho; Editing by Tony Munroe, Robert Birsel)

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/06/0 ... 01500.html?

_________________
www.twitter.com/hniman


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Wed Jun 03, 2015 8:02 pm 
Offline

Joined: Wed Aug 19, 2009 10:42 am
Posts: 56044
Location: Pittsburgh, PA USA
More than 1,300 quarantined in South Korea’s MERS virus outbreak

BY ARIEL MIN June 3, 2015 at 6:31 PM EDT
Image
Passengers wear masks to prevent contracting Middle East Respiratory Syndrome at Incheon International Airport in Incheon, South Korea, June 2, 2015. Photo by Kim Hong-Ji/Reuters

In South Korea, fears of a Middle Eastern Respiratory Syndrome, or MERS, outbreak have closed more than 230 schools and put more than 1,300 people under mandatory quarantine, NPR reported.
Two South Korean patients died of the viral respiratory disease on Monday, with three others in critical condition. So far, as many as 30 people have tested positive for the disease, making it the largest MERS outbreak outside of the Arabic Peninsula.

Symptoms of MERS include cough, fever, shortness of breath, and in some cases diarrhea and vomiting. The disease is often complicated with pneumonia or kidney failure, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

According to World Health Organization, the outbreak in South Korea began with a 68-year-old man who had returned from a business trip to the Middle East on May 4. Seven days after his return, he developed symptoms and visited at least four clinics and hospitals to seek care. He was not isolated for at least nine days until officials declared it the country’s first case of MERS on May 20, sharing hospital rooms and being exposed to health care workers and family members.

Scientists suspect that South Korea’s first patient contacted the disease from camels, which WHO calls a “major reservoir host for MERS” in the Middle East.

MERS was first reported in Saudi Arabia in 2012 and has spread to at least 1,154 lab-confirmed cases since, with 431 deaths. According to the CDC, the disease is in the same family of viruses as Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome, or SARS, a respiratory illness that WHO declared a worldwide health threat when it broke out in 2003.

http://www.pbs.org/newshour/rundown/sou ... arantined/?

_________________
www.twitter.com/hniman


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Thu Jun 04, 2015 7:18 pm 
Offline

Joined: Wed Aug 19, 2009 10:42 am
Posts: 56044
Location: Pittsburgh, PA USA
Viral Superspreader? How One Man Triggered A Deadly MERS Outbreak
JUNE 04, 2015 7:03 PM ET
MICHAELEEN DOUCLEFF
Image
Patient one: A businessman brought the Middle East respiratory syndrome to South Korea in early May. Since then, he has likely spread the virus to more than 20 other people. Several of those have passed the virus onto others.
Patient one: A businessman brought the Middle East respiratory syndrome to South Korea in early May. Since then, he has likely spread the virus to more than 20 other people. Several of those have passed the virus onto others.
Maia Majumder/Health Map
An outbreak of a deadly virus in South Korea has set off alarms across the region.

In the past week, South Korea's confirmed cases of the Middle East respiratory syndrome have more than tripled to 41, with at least three deaths. About 1,600 people are quarantined and more than 1,000 schools are closed.

Since the first case on May 20, confirmed cases of Middle East respiratory syndrome, or MERS, have swelled to at least 30 in South Korea.
GOATS AND SODA
Classes Canceled, 1,300 Quarantined In S. Korea's Scramble To Stop MERS
It's the largest outbreak of MERS outside Saudi Arabia. And researchers around the world have been trying to figure out why the outbreak in South Korea has gotten so large, so fast.

Now researchers have a clue: a superspreader event.

In the past, MERS hasn't been very contagious — at all. The virus is actually lousy at spreading from person to person. On average, a person who catches MERS passes it on to only one person, or even nobody.

So outbreaks peter out (because there's no "sustained transmission," as epidemiologists say).

But then last month, something unusual happened. A businessman, age 68, picked up MERS in the Middle East and brought it to South Korea. It was the first time MERS was in the country. And before health officials knew he had MERS, he had visited at least three hospitals seeking care and likely spread MERS to more than 20 people.

A student wearing a face mask stands in a public square in Seoul on June 3. More than 200 primary schools shut down as South Korea has struggled to contain an outbreak of the MERS virus.
GOATS AND SODA
MERS In South Korea Is Bad News But It's Not Yet Time To Panic
So the big question now is why is MERS suddenly spreading like a cold — or worse? "What we now see in South Korea is kind of interesting and kind of worrying," says Vincent Munster, who leads the viral ecology unit at the National Institute of Allergies and Infectious Diseases in Montana. "So we really have to figure out what's going on there."

One scary idea is that the virus has changed or mutated so it's now more contagious.

"It's always possible that a virus can change. That's a general rule," says Christian Drosten, a virologist at the University of Bonn in Germany. "But such viruses usually need not just one but several of these changes [to become more contagious]. And the probability for these to happen together is really very, very low."

A South Korean walks through a market in Seoul wearing a mask. South Korean President Park Geun-Hye scolded health officials over their "insufficient" response to an outbreak of the MERS virus.
GOATS AND SODA
South Koreans Mask Up In The Face Of MERS Scare
Drostan has been on the ground in Saudi Arabia, working with the Ministry of Health to track MERS around the country. He says sometimes he finds patients who make more virus in their lungs.

"If we look at data that we have [from Saudi Arabia] that are not published yet, what we can say is there are some patients that have extraordinarily high viral loads," Drostan says.

And when these so-called superspreaders cough, he says, they can infect many people, sometimes a dozen or more.

"Maybe the index case in Korea was one of those superspreaders," Drosten says.

And here's the key thing about this superspreader theory: Drosten thinks that MERS superspreaders are quite rare (although he doesn't know the exact the percentage).

So if his theory is right, people who caught MERS from the businessman aren't likely to pass the virus onto others. And if that's the case, the outbreak should be over quite quickly, maybe in a week or so.

http://www.npr.org/sections/goatsandsod ... um=twitter

_________________
www.twitter.com/hniman


Top
 Profile  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 4 posts ] 

All times are UTC - 5 hours [ DST ]


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Google [Bot], Yahoo [Bot] and 66 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
cron
Powered by phpBB® Forum Software © phpBB Group