COVID-19 Relapse: 51 South Koreans Test Positive Days After Being Cured
Expert At Centre For Disease Control and Prevention Feels It Could Be A Case Of The Novel Coronavirus ‘Reactivating’ In Cured Patients
Seoul: In a worrying development, Korea’s Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (CDCP) says the novel coronavirus could be “reactivating” in people who have been cured of the illness.
Fifty-one people, who had been classed as ‘cured’ of COVID-19 in South Korea, tested positive shortly after being released from quarantine. And according to Jeong Eun-kyeong, director-general of the CDCP, the virus may have been reactivated in these people, rather than they being infected again.
“While we are putting more emphasis on reactivation as the possible cause, we are conducting a comprehensive study on this,” Jeong said. “There have been many cases when a patient during treatment will test negative one day and positive another.”
A COVID-19 infected patient is deemed to have recovered fully when two tests conducted within 24 hours produce negative results.
One of the earliest countries to report novel coronavirus cases, South Korea did remarkably well to check the spread of the disease since the beginning of March. A massive testing programme helped the country to limit the number of deaths to 204.
There has been fear of re-infection in China also, where the virus first emerged in December 2019. There have been reports that some Chinese patients have tested positive, and even died, after having recovered and left the hospital.