Taipei sus­pected MERS case tests neg­a­tive

The China Post - - LOCAL -

A 34-year-old Tai­wanese man sus­pected of hav­ing the deadly Mid­dle East Re­s­pi­ra­tory Syn­drome coro­n­avirus ( MERS- CoV), who trav­eled to Dubai and Viet­nam ear­lier this month, has tested neg­a­tive for the ill­ness, health au­thor­i­ties said Sun­day.

Af­ter South Korea re­ported more than a dozen MERS virus in­fec­tions, spark­ing fears of the spread of the virus to Tai­wan, Neihu Dis­trict in Taipei re­ported a sus­pected MERS-CoV case in­volv­ing the man a day ear­lier, but it turned out to be type B in­fluenza, ac­cord­ing to Cen­ters for Dis­ease Con­trol (CDC) Deputy Di­rec­tor­Gen­eral Chou Jih-haw ( ).

The man went on a busi­ness trip to Dubai May 23-25 be­fore head­ing to Viet­nam May 26-29. He fell ill and be­gan suf­fer­ing from fever and a sore throat May 28 and sought med­i­cal at­ten­tion at a hos­pi­tal the fol­low­ing day.

The hos­pi­tal then took sam­ples from him and re­ported his case to health agen­cies.

Ac­cord­ing to South Korean health of­fi­cials, the first con­firmed case in South Korea was found in a 68-year-old man who trav­eled to Saudi Ara­bia, the United Arab Emi­rates and Bahrain in April and May. He re­turned to South Korea via Qatar. Since then, the virus has spread to vic­tims with whom he came into close con­tact, in­clud­ing a nurse and other hos­pi­tal pa­tients.

Since Korea’s out­break of MERS, the largest among nonMid­dle Eastern coun­tries, Tai­wan has re­ported 17 sus­pected cases, all of which were neg­a­tive, Chou said, adding that Tai­wan has taken mea­sures to pre­vent in­fec­tions and bor­der con­trols to pre­vent the spread of the dis­ease have been tight­ened.

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