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(2nd LD) S. Korea reports 1st death of coronavirus patient

All Headlines 21:44 February 20, 2020

(ATTN: UPDATES in paras 2-3)

SEOUL, Feb. 20 (Yonhap) -- South Korea on Thursday reported the nation's first death of a coronavirus patient, with the total number of confirmed cases surpassing 100.

The Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC) said a 63-year-old man, who died on Wednesday morning at a hospital in the southeastern city of Cheongdo, posthumously tested positive for COVID-19.

KCDC officials said late Thursday he is presumed to have died of pneumonia.

He had been hospitalized for more than 20 years at the institution, where a total of 15 confirmed cases have been reported, according to KCDC.

The authorities have been testing all patients and medical staff at the hospital since Wednesday when two patients in the psychiatric ward were confirmed to have been infected.

KCDC is looking into the hospital's possible connection with the country's 31st confirmed case -- a 61-year-old South Korean woman who visited Cheongdo early this month before she was confirmed to be infected.

As of Thursday afternoon, the total number of confirmed cases in South Korea stood at 104.

This photo, taken on Feb. 20, 2020, shows a hospital in the southeastern city of Cheongdo, where South Korea's first death of a coronavirus patient was reported on the day. Health authorities said a 63-year-old man, who died of pneumonia on Feb. 19, posthumously tested positive for the virus. (Yonhap)

kdh@yna.co.kr
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