S. Korea to send 3rd evacuation plane to Wuhan

Feb 10, 2020, 08:09 am

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Prime Minister Chung Sye-kyun speaks during a meeting on response to the coronavirus outbreak at the Government Complex Seoul on Feb. 9, 2020./ Source: Yonhap News

By AsiaToday reporter Yoon Seo-young

The government has decided to deploy an additional temporarily arranged flight to the Chinese city of Wuhan to evacuate Korean nationals and their families. It is conducting a survey on some 200 remaining Korean nationals, and it plans to send an additional flight as soon as relevant discussions with Chinese authorities are complete.

South Korea on Sunday has confirmed three more cases of the new coronavirus, bringing in the total to 27. The three patients infected with the virus are a 73-year-old Korean woman, her son and daughter-in-law. 

Health authorities expect more of the diagnosed people will be discharged as most of them have minor symptoms. They believe the new coronavirus is spreading faster than SARS and MERS. 

The Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC) said the 25th patient, whose family members visited China’s Guangdong province from November to Jan. 31, tested positive for the virus. She is hospitalized at the Seoul National University Bundang Hospital. According to the KCDC, the 25th patient is believed to have contracted the virus through secondary infection as her daughter-in-law had been coughing since Feb. 4. 

“After the 25th patient was confirmed, her daughter-in-law and her son underwent check-ups for the virus and tested positive,” KCDC Director Jung Eun-kyeong said. 

“It is difficult to tackle the new coronavirus because we believe the virus spreads when a patient has mild symptoms. Although severity of the disease is lower when compared to SARS and MERS, it is spreading significantly fast,” Jung said. “Three of the virus-infected patients have been discharged and we expect more of the diagnosed people will be discharged as there are patients who are undergoing virus testing,” she added.

The country’s fourth confirmed patient has recovered and been discharged from the hospital. The 55-year-old South Korean man returned from his visit to Wuhan on Jan. 20 and was diagnosed with the virus on Jan. 27. He was the country’s third case to fully recover from the virus and be discharged from a hospital. Two others left the hospital last week. The first fully recovered person is a 55-year-old man who had visited China, while the second is a 35-year-old Chinese woman who had come from Wuhan.

Prime Minister Chung Sye-kyun announced that the government would also tighten quarantine screening for visitors from virus-hit countries as he presided over an emergency ministerial meeting at the Ggovernment complex in Seoul. 

Meanwhile, a WHO-led international team investigating the coronavirus outbreak will leave for China on Monday or Tuesday, WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said at a daily press briefing in Geneva. 

#evacuation plane #Wuhan #coronavirus #South Korea 
Copyright by Asiatoday