Korea’s Ministry of Health and Welfare announced on June 6 that nine more cases of MERS (Middle East Respiratory Syndrome) have been reported in the country, which brings the total number of confirmed cases in Korea to 50. The number of deaths caused by MERS in Korea is currently four.
Three of these newly confirmed patients are members of the medical staff at St. Mary’s Hospital in Pyeongtaek. This is the hospital where the first MERS patient in Korea, a 68-year-old man who had been traveling in the Middle East, was hospitalized in May. The total number of infected cases from this hospital is now 33, and includes patients, medical staff, and visitors.
Another five of these new cases originated at the Samsung Medical Center in Seoul, where a doctor was also previously diagnosed with the illness. In total, there have been seven cases reported at the Samsung Medical Center.
So far there have been no confirmed cases of MERS transmitted in Korea outside of a hospital setting. While MERS can be fatal to elderly people who suffer from chronic illnesses, healthy people are said to be able to recover on their own.
Korea’s Ministry of Health and Welfare announced on June 6 that one MERS patient has recovered from the illness and been discharged from the hospital, while two others were preparing to be discharged.