Although there have been some media reports swirling around the newswires over the past hour, we now have an official statement on two more deaths due to Korea's MERS outbreak.
These are in addition to the single death announced earlier this morning of a 72 year-old woman.
Both patients (males age 73 and 78) had co-morbidities, and were roommates of patient #16. First the statement, then I'll return with a bit more.
Homers party confirmed two additional persons killed , the death toll 13 people
- 23 times , 24 times, confirmed in a letter Konyang hospital 16 times party confirmed the same hospital ward -
□ Department of Health and Human Services ' central Homers management task force " is 6 month 12 day ( Friday ), confirmed Homers party of additional deaths 2 persons (12 th , 13 th dead ), the announcement was .
○ 12 second deaths are 23 times party confirmed ( M , 73 years old , chronic obstructive pulmonary disease / asthma ) by 5.27 ~ 5.31 Konyang admitted to the hospital between the work and 16 times in contact with the confirmed characters were , 6.1 days Homers diagnosis is determined Chungnam National University Hospital isolation ward at the hospital was treating the deteriorated state of 6.12 days (21 hour 30 minute ) died .
○ 13 second deaths are 24 parties confirmed once ( M , 78 years old , Asthma / Hypertension ) to 5.28 ~ 5.31 days Konyang admitted to the hospital between 16 confirmed contacts with party time was 6.1 days Homers been diagnosed in Chungnam National University Hospital isolation ward inpatient treatment was deteriorating state of 6.12 days (22 hour 20 minute ) died .
Although it is possible for healthy young person to become serious ill, and even die, from the MERS virus - by far those hardest hit have been patients of advanced age and with other serious co-morbidities.
Often these deaths come only after days or weeks of supportive care in hospital ICU's, and that can artificially lower the perceived fatality rate during the opening weeks of an outbreak.
The Korean media has made much of the `lower fatality rate' of MERS in Korea (now about 10%) compared to what has been reported over the past 3 years in the Middle East (37%). While regional differences are possible, it is simply too early to make any assumptions about where the CFR in Korea will end up.