Virus from relapse cases not highly infectious: KCDC

Health authorities are still studying how they should interpret cases that test positive for COVID-19 again in PCR tests after being released from quarantine

South Korea’s health authorities said Wednesday the novel coronavirus detected from the country’s relapse cases appears to be not very infectious or transmissible.

Of the 39 culture tests using samples collected from people who retested positive for COVID-19 after making full recoveries, six were completed and all tested negative for the novel coronavirus, according to the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC).

“Although their polymerase chain reaction (PCR) tests were positive, they tested negative after being cultivated in isolation, meaning the viruses from relapse cases have very low or no infectious power,” KCDC chief Jeong Eun-kyeong said.

Asked whether COVID-19 patients should be released from quarantine based on results from culture tests instead of PCR tests, Jeong said such method lacks effectiveness.

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