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PostPosted: Thu Jun 04, 2015 8:40 am 
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MERS South Korea Tertiary Case 82M Dies

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 04, 2015 8:45 am 
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80 elderly patients died ward written as Homers
Enter article 2015-06-04 9:42 | last modified 2015-06-04 10:47 1537
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War in a hospital in the 16th Homers confirmed 82-year-old man who was hospitalized in the same ward as the patient has died last night around 9 o'clock. Men died in the hospital last month to nine days cold, pneumonia and renal failure dwaeteumyeo the disease spreading into doubt Homers the patient was classified as. primary test for men is determined by dwaetgo Homers voice, the second inspection carried out again within 48 hours was killed while trying to proceed yesterday killed a man this afternoon about Homers infection is found to be planning and, if confirmed to be infected with Homers, the third will be the first cases of infected people died. This patient was diagnosed 16th Homers patients Three of four patients who admitted to the ward with 6 rooms A 40-year-old Mr. Homers received a diagnosed, and 1 master had died yesterday aged 80.

http://news.naver.com/main/read.nhn?mod ... om=twitter

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 04, 2015 8:52 am 
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S Korea reports third death from MERS outbreak
An 82-year-old man was diagnosed with the MERS virus in a posthumous test after he died in hospital on Wednesday night, the health ministry said in a statement.

POSTED: 04 Jun 2015 20:34

SEOUL: South Korea on Thursday (Jun 4) reported its third death from an outbreak of the MERS virus that has infected dozens of people, seen hundreds of schools closed and caused thousands to cancel travel plans.

An 82-year-old man was diagnosed with the MERS virus in a posthumous test after he died in hospital on Wednesday night, the health ministry said in a statement.

He was originally being treated for asthma and pneumonia but was placed under quarantine after other patients in his ward tested positive for Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS).

The latest case brought the total number of people diagnosed with the potentially deadly virus in South Korea to 36, the largest outbreak outside Saudi Arabia.

More than 900 schools, from kindergartens to colleges, have now shut their gates and the government's MERS hotline took more than 3,000 calls on Wednesday as public fears have grown.

Before Thursday only two people - a 58-year-old woman and a 71-year-old man - had died in South Korea from the disease, which has no cure or vaccine.

The first case, reported on May 20, was of a 68-year-old man diagnosed after a trip to Saudi Arabia.

Since then, more than 1,660 people who may have been exposed to the virus have been placed under varying levels of quarantine.

While around 160 were isolated at state-designated facilities, most were told to stay home and strictly limit their interactions with other people.

In Seoul, growing public concern has been reflected in the daily increase in the number of commuters wearing face masks on buses and subways.

MASS TOURIST CANCELLATIONS

The anxiety has been exported, with the Korea Tourism Organisation (KTO) reporting Thursday that around 7,000 tourists - mostly from China and Taiwan - had cancelled planned group trips to South Korea.

"A mass cancellation of this scale is very unusual... and many travellers cited the MERS outbreak as the main reason," a KTO spokesman told AFP.

The military has also been affected with more than 20 symptomatic soldiers quarantined, including six who had contact with a South Korean air force officer recently diagnosed with MERS.

The officer was serving at the air base in Osan, south of Seoul, which also hosts the US 51st Fighter Wing.

"Our hospital has established a plan to care for our population as well as screening those coming onto Osan," Colonel Brook Leonard wrote on the unit's official Facebook page.

President Park Geun-hye's administration, and health officials in general, have been criticised for responding too slowly to the initial outbreak.

In an emergency meeting with health officials on Wednesday, Park called for "utmost efforts" to curb the spread of the virus and ease public fear.

MERS has now infected 1,161 people globally, with 436 deaths. More than 20 countries have been affected, with most cases in Saudi Arabia.

The virus is considered a deadlier but less infectious cousin of Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS), which killed hundreds of people when it appeared in Asia in 2003.

The World Health Organisation said it expected more infections in South Korea, but stressed that there was "no evidence of sustained transmission in the community".

The South's Unification Ministry said it had agreed to a request from North Korea to provide thermal-imaging cameras to screen arrivals at their joint industrial zone in Kaesong.

Kaesong lies 10 kilometres (six miles) over the border in North Korea, and around 500 South Koreans travel there every day to manage factories that employ some 53,000 North Korean workers.

- AFP/ec

http://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/asi ... 93232.html?

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 04, 2015 10:44 am 
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South Korea Reports 3rd Death From MERS Virus
By CHOE SANG-HUN
JUNE 4, 2015
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Tourists wearing protective masks in Seoul, South Korea, on Thursday, as fears over Middle East respiratory syndrome, or MERS, continued to spread. Credit Ed Jones/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

SEOUL, South Korea — An 82-year-old man has died of Middle East respiratory syndrome, officials said on Thursday, confirming a third death in South Korea caused by the virus that has forced more than 1,160 schools and kindergartens in the country to shut down temporarily.

The man died on Wednesday and a posthumous test showed him to be infected with the virus, also known as MERS, the government said in a statement.

The man had not been on the list of 35 South Koreans that the government said were infected, raising further questions about its ability to contain the virus. Two other South Korean patients died on Monday.

The 82-year-old was being treated for asthma and pneumonia in late May when a new patient arrived in his hospital room. That patient was later found to be carrying the virus. Three other patients who stayed in that room have since tested positive.

An earlier test on the 82-year-old showed that he was not infected, and he was under quarantine for further observation when he died, officials said.

As fears of the virus spread in the past few days, the number of kindergartens and schools that have temporarily shut down to prevent the spread of the virus has jumped to 1,164 from 230. Most of the closed schools are in Gyeonggi Province, which surrounds Seoul, the capital.

Most of the MERS cases reported so far involve patients believed to have been infected in hospitals in that province.

The government has refused to disclose the names and locations of six hospitals where it said the MERS cases were discovered. All of those infected were either patients, medical staff members or visitors. The government has raced to track down all those who may have come into contact with the MERS patients, isolating more than 1,660 people in their homes or at state-run facilities to see if they develop symptoms of the virus.

Fear of the virus appeared also to have crossed the heavily armed border with North Korea.

On Thursday, the Unification Ministry of South Korea said that the North had asked it to lend heat-detecting cameras to help screen potential MERS patients among South Korean factory managers commuting to an industrial park run jointly by the two countries in the North Korean border city of Kaesong. In the complex, 54,000 North Koreans work in 124 factories run by the South.

Ministry officials said there had been no indication that the North would temporarily close the Kaesong complex over fear of the virus. The site is an important source of money for the North Korean government.

South Korea planned to provide the North with three heat-detecting cameras. It also lent similar cameras to the North in November, when North Korea tightened inspections at ports and airports and closed its borders to all foreign tourists to guard against Ebola. North Korea lifted its ban in early March.

Thousands of North Koreans are said to be working at building sites in the Middle East, where MERS first emerged in 2012 and where the vast majority of the more than 470 deaths attributed to it have occurred.

http://www.nytimes.com/2015/06/05/world ... html?&_r=0

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 04, 2015 11:17 am 
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South Korea Confirms Third Death From MERS
Foster Klug / AP 10:53 AM ET
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Stringer—AP
Masked Chinese medical workers walk past the ICU where a South Korean MERS patient is being treated at Huizhou Municipal Central Hospital in Huizhou city, south China's Guangdong province, on June 1, 2015.
The cases are linked to a 68-year-old man who traveled to the Middle East

(SEOUL, South Korea) — Sales of surgical masks surge amid fears of a deadly, poorly understood virus. Airlines announce “intensified sanitizing operations.” More than 900 schools close and 1,600 people — and 17 camels in zoos — are quarantined.

The current frenzy in South Korea over MERS, or Middle East Respiratory Syndrome, brings to mind the other menacing diseases to hit Asia over the last decade — SARS, which killed hundreds, and bird flu.

Then, as now, confusion ruled as the media harped on the growing public panic, and health care workers and government officials struggled to understand and contain the diseases, sometimes downplaying the danger, sometimes inadvertently hyping it.

While it’s still early and MERS is a scary disease with no vaccine and a high death rate, there are so far more reasons for calm caution than for panic.

Here’s a look at what’s happening in South Korea.

___

MERS CASES ARE GROWING …

South Korea has seen 36 cases and three deaths, the largest outbreak in the world outside of Saudi Arabia, where most of the more than 1,100 cases have been and where the disease was first seen in 2012.

The cases are linked to a 68-year-old man who traveled to the Middle East, the World Health Organization said this week. When he returned and became sick last month, he visited two hospitals and two outpatient facilities, “creating multiple opportunities for exposure among health care workers and other patients,” WHO said. The man wasn’t isolated because it wasn’t thought at first that he had been exposed to MERS, which is from the same virus family as the common cold and SARS.

“Further cases can be expected,” the U.N. health agency said.

MERS’ mortality rate is an estimated 30 to 40 percent, according to Nicolas Locker, a virology expert at the University of Surrey.

The symptoms are fever, cough and shortness of breath, with an average incubation period of 5 to 6 days. Transmission comes through close contact with people — from living with or caring for someone, for instance — but camels are also thought to spread the virus.

Viruses like MERS “remind us all that the globe is indeed a small place when it comes to the rapidity with which infected people can move over large geographic distances, bringing viruses they may be incubating with them,” Christopher Olsen, a virus expert at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, said in an email.

Despite media warnings about the virus “spreading” in South Korea, 30 of the 36 cases are linked to a single hospital, as is a Korean man diagnosed in China. There’s no evidence yet in South Korea “of sustained transmission in the community,” the WHO reports.

The three people who died — a 58-year-old woman, a 71-year-old man and an 82-year-old man — had previous respiratory problems, according to the Health Ministry.

South Korea also has an efficient emergency response system, Locker said, and has learned much from previous disease scares, especially the SARS pandemic in 2003.

South Korea has airport containment centers for respiratory screenings, and 16 hospitals equipped with bio-containment units for patients and staff, including 600 beds in negative pressure units for isolation and treatment, Locker said.

Washing hands, covering coughs and sneezes, not touching your face with unclean hands — this all helps prevent MERS, experts say.

Because it isn’t airborne and only transmitted through close contact, it’s highly unlikely anyone will get the disease in crowded areas, like parks or schools, said Kang Cheol-In, an infectious diseases expert at the Seoul-based Samsung Medical Center.

The closing of hundreds of schools “really doesn’t make sense,” Kang said.

__

MEDIA AND PUBLIC FEARS MAY BE OVERBLOWN

Some experts believe the government should have done more initially to convince the public that many of their fears are unwarranted.

Many people here, however, are in no mood to trust their public officials. The MERS scare follows the sinking of a ferry that killed more than 300 people last year and was widely blamed in part on official incompetence.

Some experts support a strong quarantine to stop MERS’ spread; others question its worth.

Kim Sung-han, a professor at the Seoul-based Asan Medical Center, said isolating anyone who has had contact with MERS patients, even if they don’t show symptoms, is pointless because no studies show the MERS virus can be spread during the incubation period.

“It’s like using a hammer to push in a thumbtack,” Kim said.

The possibility of MERS spreading through South Korea is worrisome, of course, but Kim is skeptical that it will happen because the disease usually spreads slowly and requires close contact.

Kang, the infectious diseases expert, said the initial government response was inadequate, “but the people are also looking at things in an unreasonable manner.”

___

AP writer Hyung-jin Kim contributed to this report.

http://time.com/3908943/south-korea-mers-third-death/?

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