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Two additional confirmed cases of COVID-19 in S. Korea Updated: 2020-02-18 07:01:39 KST

South Korea reported two additional cases of the novel coronavirus over the weekend bringing the total number of confirmed cases to 30.
The 29th patient is an 82-year-old South Korean man, the oldest confirmed patient in the country so far.
And the 30th patient his 68-year-old wife.
On Saturday, the male patient visited Korea University Anam Hospital because of a chest pain.
There, doctors found symptoms of pneumonia so they ran a coronavirus checkup to which he tested positive.
He went into quarantine at Seoul National University Hospital early on Sunday.
Soon after, his wife was also confirmed with coronavirus and isolated at the same hospital.
Since then, Korea University Anam Hospital has closed its emergency room.
A total of 76 people both the medical staff and the patients there who came into contact with the confirmed patients have been quarantined as well.

A point of concern here is that it is not clear how the couple became infected with the virus.
They've not been overseas since December, and they had no contact with the previous 28 patients.
This shows that South Korea now needs to be on alert over possible community transmissions.

"Patients come into contact with others at places they visit and this causes second and third infections and the virus spreads like that. We'll be able to find out about these patients after an investigation, but I believe they could've been infected like that."

Up until now, South Korea has seen no deaths from the coronavirus and nine out of the 30 confirmed cases have been released from quarantine after making full recoveries.

To prevent the further spread of the virus, the government is to run tests for the virus on all pneumonia patients across the country.
Those who've not traveled abroad can also be tested.
By the end of the month, ten-thousand people can be tested in a day a rise from the current five-thousand.
Oh Jung-hee, Arirang News.
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