South Korea on Wednesday confirmed 20 more cases of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), raising the total number of infections to 51.
According to the Korea Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC), 18 of the 20 new patients were residents in Daegu, about 300 km southeast of the capital Seoul.
The country's 31st patient, a 61-year-old woman, was believed to have infected at least 15 of the new patients.
Fourteen of them attended the same church services as the 31st patient, and the remaining one was a worker at a hospital where the woman was hospitalised, Xinhua news agency reported.
One of the new patients was the 11-year-old daughter of the 20th patient. Another newly infected person, a 77-year-old man, has not gone abroad recently nor had direct contact with other patients.
Since January 3, the country has tested more than 11,000 people, among whom 9,973 tested negative for the COVID-19 virus and 1,149 were being checked.
Sixteen of the patients have been discharged from hospitals after making full recoveries.
The health authorities were reportedly considering raising the infectious disease alert level from the current "orange" to the highest "red."
South Korean President Moon Jae-in ordered far stronger measures to prevent the spread of the virus in the regional communities, instructing officials to draw up measures to stimulate the economy that was forecast to be hit by the coronavirus outbreak.
( 246 Words)