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Asean & Global Updates
POSTED | 11:17 AM | 23-06-2015

MERS-hit woman gives birth to healthy boy

A pregnant woman who contracted Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) has given birth to a healthy baby, South Korea’s Ministry of Health and Welfare said on Tuesday (23 June 2015).

Three additional cases of MERS were also confirmed, bringing the total to 175. There were no additional deaths, according to The Korea Times.

Both the mother and the baby are in good condition, after the former was declared free of the virus a day before the birth.

The 39-year-old delivered a boy at 4.33 a.m. in Samsung Medical Center (SMC) where she had been undergoing treatment for the virus infection.

The delivery was through a Caesarean section because of a premature separation of the placenta, which the hospital said was unrelated to MERS.

The woman, who had stayed at the hospital since mid-May ahead of childbirth, was diagnosed with MERS on June 10 after visiting her sick mother at the hospital’s emergency room where the 14th patient spread the disease to more than 80 people.

“At first we were concerned because some World Health Organization reports showed cases where a baby or a mother with MERS died,” said Prof Lee Jae-gap from Hallym University Hospital during a government press briefing.

“But for her, symptoms disappeared quickly after the diagnosis, and we were sure of her recovery because she tested negative twice before being announced as MERS-free.”

Lee, who is a member of the government’s response team, said it may be the first time for a pregnant woman who has had MERS to give birth safely; and for both the mother and the baby to be healthy. The baby also tested negative for MERS through a test conducted right after birth.

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