SEOUL, South Korea — The number of South Koreans infected with Middle East respiratory syndrome increased to 87 on Monday after the government identified additional cases. It also said Monday that an 80-year-old man had died, bringing the number of deaths linked to the virus in South Korea to six.
Officials revealed the names and locations of all 24 hospitals that had had confirmed cases after critics accused the government of helping stoke fear and risking a spread of the virus by withholding the information.
So far, confirmed cases have infected others only in six of the 24 hospitals they passed through.
“As the numbers of patients and people under quarantine continued to increase, the government decided to take strong steps to help ease the people’s concern and fears,” Deputy Prime Minister Choi Kyung-hwan said during a news conference on Sunday where the names of the hospitals were revealed. Officials said that they had already quarantined people who may have come in contact with an infected patient in the hospitals.
Until now, the government had repeatedly declined to reveal the names of all the hospitals, insisting that doing so would incite a panic in the neighborhoods nearby. But many of the names have been circulating through social media for several days.