Nurse at one of Korea’s largest hospitals tests positive for virus
Seoul’s Asan Medical Center, one of the largest hospitals in South Korea, was partially shut down on Saturday after one of its nurses tested positive for the new coronavirus, hospital officials said.
The nurse working in the southeastern Seoul hospital’s otolaryngology ward was diagnosed with COVID-19 at 11:30 p.m. on Friday, they said.
The hospital has closed parts of the 10th floor of its New Building, where the infected nurse was on duty, and asked all hospital staff as well as patients and their family members who came into contact with the nurse to take a coronavirus test.
The entry ban for the 10th floor was lifted later Saturday after disinfection and epidemiological investigation were completed, the hospital said, adding the possibility of in-house transmission is very low due to its strict observance of quarantine rules.
The hospital speculates that the nurse, a resident of the southeastern ward of Gangdong, may have contracted the virus from her husband, who had previously come into contact with his mother already diagnosed with COVID-19.
A similar nurse infection and partial hospital shutdown has occurred in Changwon, 400 kilometers southeast of Seoul.
The Masan Medical Center, a public institution designated as a coronavirus specialized hospital for South Gyeongsang Province to which Changwon belongs, said one of its nurses has tested positive for COVID-19.
The nurse had complained of a headache, beginning Thursday, before taking the coronavirus test, the hospital said, noting that 18 people, including three doctors, four nurses and seven family members, have been found to have come into contact with the infected nurse and been asked to take a virus test.
The hospital closed its emergency room and disinfected its entire building.
According to government data, a total of 137 local medical workers, including 11 doctors and 80 nurses, have tested positive for the coronavirus as of Saturday.
Source: Yonhap News Agency