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S.Korea MERS Update: 162 Infected, 20 Dead + 6,500 in Quarantine

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posted on Jun, 2 2015 @ 08:53 PM

South Korea confirmed five more cases of the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (Mers) virus, the health ministry said early on Wednesday, bringing to 30 the total number of cases in the country of the often-deadly illness.
On Tuesday, South Korea reported its first two deaths from Mers since the first confirmed case two weeks ago, fuelling growing worry about the spread of the illness in the country, which has reported the most cases of Mers outside the Middle East.

South Korea reports five more cases of Mers

This looks like its definitely going to get bigger before they get a handle on this outbreak(also there is the possibility that they won't). Of course this isn't the only thing that's ongoing in this outbreak.

Of the five new cases, four had been in the same hospital as the first patient, a 68-year-old man who had recently travelled to four countries in the Middle East. The other, a 60-year-old man, caught it from another person infected in the outbreak.

The first patient had been in four different countries of late. Also, we have a tertiary infection and 2 people have died.

Tele graph deaths article

South Korea reported on Tuesday two deaths from Middle East Respiratory Syndrome, the first since an outbreak that has affected 25 people in two weeks.
A 58-year-old woman who had had contact with the country's first patient died of acute respiratory failure on Monday, the health ministry said. A 71-year-old man who had been on respiratory support also died.

MERS has also been confirmed in China, arriving via Hong Kong from South Korea.

China said on Friday a 44-year-old South Korean man had tested positive for Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS), China's first confirmed case, but that it had not found any symptoms in 38 people who had been in close contact with him.

Health authorities in the southern Chinese province of Guangdong said it was likely the disease would spread as the patient had taken a bus, crossed a busy border checkpoint from Hong Kong and stayed in a hotel before being taken to hospital.

"As we have said before, the possibility of MERS transferring into Guangdong is very high," He Jianfeng, director for the Guangdong Provincial Center for Disease Control, told reporters.

They are not even trying to sugar coat this. Given the travel methods used they are almost saying its certain that they will see further cases here.

Hong Kong has went onto high alert and has 18 people in quarantine, obviously as a reaction to the case in China, bearing in mind how condensed these population centres are I will be amazed if we don't see quite a large upturn in cases over the next days and weeks.

Hong Kong was on high alert yesterday as 18 people were ordered to undergo quarantine and scores more were being traced after coming into contact with a Korean man who was confirmed as China's first Middle East respiratory syndrome (Mers) patient.

Three others were admitted to Princess Margaret Hospital with mild respiratory symptoms after coming into contact with the index patient, who flew into Hong Kong from Seoul on Asiana Airlines flight OZ723 on Tuesday and took buses to Sha Tau Kok and Huizhou, Guangdong.

All three tested negative for Mers.

Most instances of MERS have previously occured in Arabic nations like Saudi Arabia so getting honest and timely reports in the past has not always been possible. In my opinion there is always a huge risk when infections/virus hit new population centres with different genetic make-ups. It has always been my opinion that this must encourage bacteria/viruses to mutate quicker.

We will have to wait and see where this will go.

Stay safe
edit on 2-6-2015 by randomspecific because: formatting has went screwy

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posted on Jun, 2 2015 @ 09:20 PM
It will be here any day and once it mutates look out Christine !!!!!

posted on Jun, 2 2015 @ 09:42 PM
In good timing it would appear that Chinese researchers have found possible curative antibodies that will hopefully lead to a cure for MERS.

Chinese scientists have worked out several potentially curative antibodies and medicines for the MERS.

These antibodies have shown effectiveness in early experiments in laboratories and will be tested on humans in the next phase.

However promising as this is it would still take a while to get to the point of a cure. Still good to know that they are hopefully on the right path, especially given todays news and what the potential news could be over the next week.

posted on Jun, 3 2015 @ 12:29 AM
Some further news articles.

The following article is a good all round report to catch up on this outbreak of MERS in Asia.

Here is the WHO update

Unfortunately I think they are just a bit to far behind this and we are going to see a wide spread outbreak. The index patient visited 4 medical centres before he was properly diagnosed. Most spread occurs in hospitals. There is also some questions being asked about the ease of spread (there always is, I guess we will have to see more data to get a better idea) . In reports you can see figures of up to 700 currently in isolation which is a lot given they have not finished contact tracing so the web must already be very dispersed.

alert level 3
edit on 3-6-2015 by randomspecific because: adding who link

posted on Jun, 3 2015 @ 06:23 AM
2 more just died today. Also the President of S Korea was on TV. This is serious stuff now. Also 250 elementary schools now have been closed.

posted on Jun, 3 2015 @ 06:29 AM

Hong Kong (CNN)The World Health Organization warned that the MERS outbreak in South Korea is likely to grow, as 1,364 people remain under quarantine and confirmed cases grew to 30 people.

5 things to know about MERS

About three to four out of every 10 people reported with MERS have died. But like many viruses, the people who died have had underlying medical conditions that made them more vulnerable.

The two patients who died in South Korea had COPD and heavy asthma.

MERS has been linked to camels and it's possible that some people became infected after coming into contact with camels, but it's not completely clear yet.

There are no vaccines and no cures.

To prevent MERS, the CDC recommends everyday hygiene practices like hand washing, covering coughs and sneezes, and avoiding personal contact with sick people.

posted on Jun, 3 2015 @ 12:39 PM

The simplest explanation for the "superspreading event," as scientists call this type of spread, is a lapse in infection control measures at the hospital, Ben Embarek says. The SARS virus, which is distantly related to MERS, is known to have spread widely in 2003 when tubes were placed in patients' airways for mechanical ventilation, a procedure that can cause the virus to become aerosolized. Whether Korea's first patient was intubated is unclear. “We don’t really know what happened during those 3 days,” Ben Embarek says.

Other explanations are being looked at as well. The patient could be carrying a slightly different strain of the virus, or Koreans may be more susceptible to the disease than other populations, Ben Embarek says.

Opinion seems to be divided on why the index patient in this outbreak has proven to be so infectious. Was it due to the treatment he had received or are we looking at the scarier option that the virus has mutated/found a more susceptible host. Time will tell.

Keep your eyes on this one folks, I firmly believe that this has the possibility of becoming a lot worse.

posted on Jun, 3 2015 @ 05:17 PM

South Korea's Health Ministry confirmed five additional cases of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) on Thursday, raising the total to 35, including two more health care workers who treated infected patients.

Aside from the health care workers, one of the new confirmed cases was in a person who had shared a hospital room with an infected patient and two were in people who had visited the ward at another institution where the country's first confirmed patient had been admitted, the ministry said.

The transmissions occurred before the existing patients were confirmed to be MERS positive, the ministry said. Three health care workers have previously been diagnosed as having MERS.

This is an additional 5 on top of the 5 in the thread title. If we look at the details of these 5 they provide a bit more cause for concern.

2 of these people caught this by just visiting a ward where the index patient had been. As I said I think this could be bad news.

posted on Jun, 3 2015 @ 10:35 PM
An officer in the South Korean Air Force has tested positive for MERS.

SEOUL, South Korea — A South Korean air force officer stationed at Osan Air Base is under isolation at a military hospital after testing positive for Middle East Respiratory Syndrome, according to media reports.

However, the chief master sergeant is not showing symptoms of the illness, such as fever or cough, according to South Korea’s Yonhap News. The Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is expected to determine as early as Thursday if he has been infected.

Not really clear how he fits into spread pattern.

posted on Jun, 4 2015 @ 12:13 PM
Third death reported by South Korea.

South Korea on Thursday 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).

As is usual with MERS the patient had underlying sysmptoms that contributed to their death.

The current number of people in quarantine is around 1,600 with over a 1000 schools closed or classes cancelled. The toll on the tourist trade is also beginning to be seen. Up to 7,000 people have cancelled trips to South Korea in the last days.

South Korea has a massive panic on its hands over Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS), which has so far killed three people and left over 1,600 people in quarantine. Up to 7,000 tourists have canceled plans to visit the country.

South Korea is struggling to stem the outbreak. The authorities have quarantined about 1,600 people, the majority at home, but some in medical institutions, a health ministry official said, as cited by Reuters. At least 1,164 schools had been closed or canceled classes by Thursday, according to the Education Ministry.

I will update thread with further details as and when I get them.
edit on 4-6-2015 by randomspecific because: updating

posted on Jun, 4 2015 @ 03:40 PM
Christ on a bike, I hope this report isn't true.

SEOUL, June 4 (Yonhap) — A medical doctor in Seoul came into contact with over 1,000 citizens while infected with the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS), the city government said Thursday, sparking concerns of the further spread of the deadly virus.

The doctor, who works for a large general hospital in the capital city, attended large-scale events on the weekend, even after he was ordered into quarantine last week for showing suspected symptoms, according to the Seoul Metropolitan Government.

“On Saturday, the doctor attended the union meeting for the reconstruction of an apartment complex in Gaepo-dong, Seoul, which was attended by a total of 1,565 local people,” Seoul Mayor Park Won-soon said in an emergency briefing.

“He also attended two meetings of medical societies he is affiliated with on Saturday and Sunday, and visited several other public places,” he added.

If this IS true then the doctor, should he survive, needs to be punished. How reckless can you get, personally this is what puts me off some of the medical profession. The inbuilt arrogance that they know better. We can only hope that this guys actions haven't put others in a lot of danger.

posted on Jun, 4 2015 @ 05:05 PM
Well not entirely unexpected the news has just broken of the latest death in the Asian MERS outbreak, bringing the total deaths to 4. Also the number of confirmed infected has risen to 41.

reuters MERS update

South Korea confirmed the death of one more victim of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) on Friday, the fourth fatality in an outbreak of the often-deadly virus in the country.

The patient was a 76-year-old man and had been the third person to contract the illness after sharing a ward with other MERS patients, the ministry said in a press release.

The ministry said five more people were confirmed to be carrying the disease, bringing the total of South Koreans with MERS to 41 -- the highest number outside the Middle East.

edit on 4-6-2015 by randomspecific because: sorting link

posted on Jun, 5 2015 @ 07:57 PM
Well, if this is accurate (the language barrier may is contributing to mistakes in accurate reporting) its got to be looked at as bad news. th-korea-coronavirus/732746-south-korea-government-confirms-9-new-coronavirus-mers-cases-total-now-50-june-5-2015

This is an early update so I will be waiting for further verification but if true we are looking at 9 fresh cases to take the infected up to 50.

posted on Jun, 6 2015 @ 09:37 PM
So here we go, this is when you start to wonder if this outbreak is out of control. Don't get me wrong, they may be on top of the outbreak. Time will tell.

The good news is we are still seeing nearly all cases are from hospital infections. When/If we see cases of person to person infection out with hospitals that is when its going to be real bad news.

Still the news is bad enough.

S. Korea reports 5th death from MERS, 14 new cases

This brings the current outbreak total to 5 deaths and 64 confirmed infections.

Ten out of the newly infected people were exposed to the virus when they were in the emergency room of Samsung Medical Center in southern Seoul in late May, where a doctor was recently diagnosed with the illness, according to the government. The other four were known to have come in close contact with MERS patients at other hospitals.

"All of the additional cases were infected at hospitals," a government official said. "More cases are likely to be found at Samsung Medical Center, but the rate of fresh infections may be at standstill or decline after this weekend."

guardian article

There has been no sustained human-to-human transmission, but the worst-case scenario is the virus changes and spreads rapidly, as Sars did in 2002-2003 when it killed about 800 people around the world.

South Korea’s new cases bring the total number globally to about 1,208, based on WHO data, with at least 444 related deaths.

The next week or so is going to be critical. I imagine some people read this and kinda wonder why I even report/update this. For me, this particular event is the most worrying globally at the moment. Given what is going on you can tell how important this is to me.

When a virus starts to make headway in a new populace/geographical area nobody can tell what's going to happen. Given the right circumstances this could leap and bound and bite us all so hard in the ass we would be looking around thinking "What the hell just happened". Most likely/hopefully it won't. The government's concerned will take the right actions be quick and reduce the spread as much as they can.

This is all supposing that the virus plays ball as well. Don't go changing on us too much. As long as we continue to see hospital based infections then that's actually good news. If we start seeing a lot of person to person infection outside of the hospital environment then this may be an indicator that the virus has mutated and started to spread via aerosol methods rather than the close contact means at the moment.

Stay Safe

posted on Jun, 6 2015 @ 10:24 PM

S. Korea identifies 24 MERS-affected hospitals

SEOUL, June 7 (Yonhap) -- South Korea identified all 24 hospitals affected by the deadly Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) on Sunday, saying it wanted to ensure the public's safety with transparent information.

Acting Prime Minister Choi Kyung-hwan disclosed the names of the hospitals at a press conference. The government had earlier identified Pyeongtaek St. Mary's Hospital, in Pyeongtaek, Gyeonggi Province, where the first MERS case was confirmed, and Samsung Medical Center in Seoul, one of whose doctors has been diagnosed with MERS and apparently contacted over 1,500 people.

The full list included five more hospitals in Pyeongtaek and five more in the nation's capital.

"We're disclosing the hospitals where patients have been diagnosed with MERS, so that we can ensure the people's safety," Choi said. "MERS has been spreading across these hospitals, and it forces us to impose strict control on them. Hospitals with confirmed MERS cases in the future will be identified as well."

Not sure about this news. Yes, transparency is always good it lets people make there own minds up. The only thing is I did not expect it from the South Korean government.

Is this a sign they fear/know how bad this is and urgently want people to stop going to those medical centres. Mind you, as I type this I am also thinking "That's what I would do", a good way to limit all numbers to a health centre almost immediately through fear.

Given that this outbreak has followed usual MERS pattern so far in only/mainly spreading within a hospital environment identifying and isolating the places affected is a good move but how long before you start running out of places to treat people.

We are going to learn a few things here as this is really the first time this virus has had an out break in a society open to Western scrutiny. Hope all relevant information is spread as quickly and widely as possible to allow the right decisions to be made.
edit on 6-6-2015 by randomspecific because: spelling

posted on Jun, 7 2015 @ 12:55 AM
*Gets a bag of chips, salsa and some beers then settles in for the show*

You got this Random...

posted on Jun, 7 2015 @ 05:41 PM

South Korea reports 23 new cases of MERS virus, total rises to 87

Welp this is the first report I have seen and lacks any great detail but the figures seem to be increasing day on day.

This would bring the current totals to 87 infected and 5 dead

SEOUL: South Korea confirmed 23 more cases of the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) virus, the country's health ministry said on Monday, bringing the total to 87 in the country of the often-deadly illness.

Seventeen of the new cases come from the same Seoul hospital emergency room where the country's first patient remained before being confirmed MERS-positive, the ministry said.

Will update when I get more news sources.

Got this just in from reuters

So it looks like the numbers are correct. Still not time to panic yet as the majority of infections are still hospital based.

edit on 7-6-2015 by randomspecific because: adding link

posted on Jun, 7 2015 @ 05:46 PM
a reply to: randomspecific

I dont think they will be able to contain the outbreak, if it hits one of the major airports like Paris or London we could have a major epidemic

posted on Jun, 7 2015 @ 05:57 PM
a reply to: Temudjin

A lot depends on the virus itself. As long as the virus stays in the same form then it should be able to be contained as people that are infected are at their most virulent in the latter stages i.e. when they are attending hospital. This is why we see nearly all infections coming from medical centres.

If we start to see increased infections out with this then its cause for concern.

Its all best guess at the moment any way. We can just report and hope it gets brought under control.

posted on Jun, 7 2015 @ 06:44 PM
Here is a really good resource from @flutrackers.

Flutrackers case list

South Korea - including imported and exported cases

1) #1149 - IMPORTED CASE/INDEX CASE - Male, 68, onset May 11, hospitalized in South Korea May 15 & May 20,hospitals A,B,C,D, stable condition, travel history to Gulf, Bahrain/Saudi Arabia/UAE/Qatar WHO

2) #1151 - Female, 64, onset May 18, tested positive May 20, wife of case #1149, hospital B, South Korea WHO Released 5/6

These are the first 2 cases in the list. Each case shows sex,age along with what hospital they got infected at. At bottom of list is a list of the hospitals.

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