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(LEAD) S. Korea confirms 2nd cholera infection

All Headlines 16:58 August 25, 2016

(ATTN: CHANGES dateline; ADDS more details in 6-7 paras, photo)

SEOUL/CHANGWON, Aug. 25 (Yonhap) -- South Korea has confirmed an additional case of cholera, raising the number of people infected with the waterborne disease here to two, local health authorities said Thursday.

A 73-year-old woman residing in the southern coast of the country is presumed to have contracted the disease from eating seafood, the South Gyeongsang Provincial Government said, adding that she had already been cured.

The provincial government said she had no contact with the patient of the first infection case.

Earlier this week, the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC) announced the first case of the disease with a 59-year-old man in the southern city of Gwangju.

Inspections are currently under way at a local restaurant the woman visited, the provincial government said, suspecting the cholera bacteria may have been in imported seafood.

The KCDC said it has formed a task force to deal with the outbreak but emphasized that there is slim chance of a mass infection.

"We are closely monitoring as there is a possibility of a cholera infection," said Gwak Sook-young of the KCDC, but ruled out that the seawater has been contaminated with cholera bacteria.

The diarrheal disease, which is curable with proper medication and treatment, affects 3 million to 5 million people annually and claims more than 100,000 lives throughout the world.

khj@yna.co.kr
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