SEOUL, Sept. 15 (Yonhap) -- The number of malaria cases has been rising sharply in South Korea this year, nearing the 2016 numbers, health authorities said Friday.
A total of 610 cases of the mosquito-borne disease were confirmed from January to the first week of September, according to the Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency (KDCA).
This is more than double the 301 cases recorded during the same period last year.
It is the first time in seven years that the number of malaria cases in the country has exceeded 600 in a single year since 2016, when South Korea reported 673 cases.
If the trend continues until the end of the year, the annual malaria cases would reach 700, the highest since 826 in 2011.
Out of the total cases for this year, 553 were domestic transmissions and 57 were infected from overseas, the KDCA said.
After being bitten by a malaria-infected mosquito, patients suffer from symptoms of fever, fatigue, chills, vomiting and headaches.