Health authorities warn against MERS, avian influenza outbreaks

By Yonhap
  • Published : Mar 21, 2018 - 13:19
  • Updated : Mar 21, 2018 - 13:19

South Korean health authorities warned Wednesday that there is still the possibility that Middle East Respiratory Syndrome and avian influenza could be brought into the country from overseas.

The Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced 16 infectious diseases that people should carefully monitor and watch out for this year.

The KCDC said people are still being infected with MERS in the Middle East, which has been the region worst hit by the virus, causing authorities to closely monitor travelers returning from Middle Eastern countries in the past 14 days who show symptoms of fever and respiratory-related problems.

A Korean soldier checks a person for MERS symptoms (Yonhap)

The disease control authority also said that people should closely monitor avian influenza, which has yet to be contained in China.

It pointed out the possibility of the strain being brought into the country through travelers or birds. South Korea has not yet reported any of its people being infected with bird flu.

Among the 11 diseases is rotavirus, which can be fatal for newborns, the KCDC said.

Rotavirus is one of the most common causes of severe and dehydrating diarrhea in infants between three months and young children up to 35 months old.

Also, the health authorities warned of viruses, such as lassa fever and Crimean-Congo haemorrhagic fever, that can affect people who have been to African countries.

The hepatitis A virus and foot-and-mouth disease are highly contagious during spring, the authorities said. (Yonhap)