Sunday, May 31, 2009

Korea's Swine flu cases rise to 39 after four more confirmed to be infected

As reported by the Korea Times and Bloomberg, four more cases of H1N1 "swine flu" have been confirmed. The good news is that none of them is an English teacher. The bad news is that one of the infected — the only non-Korean of the four — is an 18-month-old infant. Keep that child in your thoughts and prayers.

All four arrived from the United States, so don't expect Korean health authorities to back down anytime soon on the idea that people arriving from overseas or those likely to come into contact with them be carefully scrutinized.

Here's the KT article in its entirety:
The health authorities said Sunday they have confirmed four more cases of Influenza A, bringing the nation's total to 39.

One American infant and three Korean nationals were confirmed to have been infected with the H1N1 virus, according to the health ministry.

All four -- a 16-year-old Korean teenager, a 38-year-old Korean woman, a 28-year-old Korean college student and an 18-month-old American infant -- came from the United States this week and were quarantined and treated after showing flu-like symptoms, the ministry said.

Korea was considered relatively insulated from the highly contagious virus until last week, with just four confirmed cases reported.

The number, however, is growing sharply after a group of foreign English teachers was found to be infected by a fellow teacher who arrived here from the U.S. recently, raising concerns the virus might be spreading through person-to-person contact.

Thirteen confirmed cases in Korea are Korean nationals and 21 are U.S. citizens, according to the government.
Be careful out there.

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