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    Number of MERS Cases Rises to 185 in South Korea

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    South Korea’s Ministry of Health and Welfare has confirmed one more Middle East Respiratory Syndrome.

    TOKYO (Sputnik) – South Korea’s Ministry of Health and Welfare has confirmed one more Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) case, bringing the total number of cases to 185, while the death toll remains unchanged.

    "The 185th case is a doctor at the Samsung Medical Center (Seoul), and is now being under epidemiological investigation," the ministry said in a Saturday statement, adding that 30 current MERS patients are in stable condition while 11 are "unstable."

    So far, MERS has taken the lives of 33 people, while 111 MERS patients have been discharged, according to the ministry.

    Over 1,400 people remain in quarantine, with most of them staying at home.

    The MERS outbreak started in South Korea in May and is largely blamed on overcrowded emergency rooms, as well as insufficient safety measures and excessive hospital patient visits.

    According to the Health Ministry, 64 of the current 185 MERS cases are family members or visitors, while 39 are medical professionals or staff.

    Most of those infected caught the virus at Samsung Medical Center, which is also where the first cases were reported.

    There is currently no approved vaccine for MERS. People with chronic illnesses or a weak immune system are at a higher risk of contracting the viral respiratory disease.

    MERS has limited human-to-human transmission, according to the World Health Organization (WHO).

    The current MERS cases in South Korea are split almost evenly among all age groups.

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    MERS Coronavirus Outbreak (41)

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    South Korea, World Health Organization (WHO), Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS)
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