Fourth MERS victim dies in South Korea

MERS continues to claim lives in South Korea, one more death takes place, raising number to four

Photo by: Reuters
Photo by: Reuters

Updated Jul 28, 2015

Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) claimed one more victim in South Korea on Friday, the fourth fatality in an outbreak of the virus in the country, according to South Korean officials.

Officials said the latest victim was a 76-year-old man and contact the deadly virus after sharing a ward with other MERS patients, the third person who contacted the virus in this way.

South Korean Health Ministry said the total number of citizens who are carrying the disease increased to 41 with five more new confirmed MERS cases, the highest number outside the Middle East.

Symptoms of MERS are fever, cough, diarrhea and loss of breath. The virus generally develops in less than two weeks. MERS spreads when in close contact with a carrier of the virus either from human or animal. In the Middle East, Saudi Arabia, where the virus was first diagnosed in 2012, the cause was linked with human contact with infected camels.

Officials said about 1,600 people have been quarantined in the country, most at home but some in medical institutions.

According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), the disease is believed to have spread from an individual travelling from the Middle East.

1,180 MERS cases have been reported worldwide, including the latest South Korean cases, since April 2012. According to WHO data, the virus has so far caused the deaths of more than 442 people.

TRTWorld and agencies