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(2nd LD) S. Korea reports 16th confirmed case of novel coronavirus

All News 11:40 February 04, 2020

(ATTN: UPDATES with more details from 5th para)

SEOUL, Feb. 4 (Yonhap) -- South Korea on Tuesday confirmed its 16th case of novel coronavirus infection, with the latest patient being placed under quarantine.

The Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC) said the patient, a 42-year-old woman, had returned from a trip to Thailand on Jan. 19 and started feeling chills on Jan. 25. Her condition has not improved despite receiving treatment, so she was tested for the viral infection on Monday with the test results coming up positive.

The KCDC said that she has been placed in quarantine with efforts underway to find out where she has been and whom she met, to see if they too have symptoms.

Common signs of infection include fever, coughing, shortness of breath, breathing difficulties and muscle cramps. In more severe cases, infection can cause pneumonia, acute respiratory syndrome and even lead to death.

Health authorities said that despite the new case, it is ready to discharge its first fully recovered coronavirus patient from a hospital this week as he has made a full recovery and is showing no symptoms of the illness.

The 55-year-old South Korean who had been to Wuhan, China, the epicenter of the outbreak, returned home on Jan. 22 and tested positive for the illness two days later.

He was the second person to have been tested with the virus after the first incident was reported on Jan. 20.

The National Medical Center, where the patient is staying, said earlier in the day that he has been completely treated for pneumonia and is in good health and able to resume a normal life.

The KCDC said that as of early Tuesday, the virus has claimed 426 lives, while infecting over 20,000 people in 27 countries.

The health authorities said despite stepped-up efforts to contain the spread of the virus, it is unlikely the matter will be resolved anytime soon.

Starting Tuesday, non-Korean travelers coming from or through China's Hubei province are denied entry into South Korea as the country is widening efforts to combat the continuing spread of the novel coronavirus.

The entry ban applies to all non-Korean travelers who over the past 14 days have stayed or traveled to the Chinese province, the home to Wuhan where the new coronavirus originated.

It is part of South Korea's first border control measures taken to avert the further advance of the epidemic into the country.

(2nd LD) S. Korea reports 16th confirmed case of novel coronavirus - 1


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