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Severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS, / sarz) is a viral respiratory disease in humans which is caused by the SARS coronavirus (SARS-CoV). Between November 2002 and July 2003, an outbreak of SARS in Hong Kong nearly became a pandemic, with 8,422 cases and 916 deaths worldwide (10.9% fatality) according to the World Health Organization. Within weeks, SARS spread from Hong Kong to infect individuals in 37 countries in early 2003.
As of today, the spread of SARS has been fully contained, with the last infected human case seen in June 2003 (disregarding a laboratory-induced infection case in 2004). However, SARS is not claimed to have been eradicated (unlike smallpox), as it may still be present in its natural host reservoirs (animal populations) and may potentially return into the human population in the future.
via Wikipedia – Read more . . .