Seoul, November 17th – Health officials said Tuesday that South Korea will tighten its physical distance guidelines amid a surge in COVID-19 cases in the metropolitan area this week.
Authorities will raise one notch in the government’s five-tier system from level 1 to level 1.5 starting Thursday midnight. The changes will last for at least two weeks.
“”[W]Health Minister Park Neung Hoo said at a news conference that he was “in danger of an outbreak,” and said, “If the virus cannot be contained, the health and safety of many people. Will endanger. “
South Korea reported 230 new COVID-19 cases on Tuesday, with three-digit infections for 10 consecutive days, with a total of more than 200 on the fourth day. About half of the new cases are concentrated in the densely populated Seoul area. ..
The new cases, which South Korea has seen most often in more than two months, originate from a variety of small clusters, from workplaces to cafes to social gatherings, making it more difficult to track and health. It is related to the authorities.
Facilities such as restaurants, bars and concert halls will not be closed under the enhanced guidelines, but safety measures such as increasing spacing and maintaining partitions between tables must be followed.
Rallying, concerts and festivals cannot contain more than 100 participants, and sporting events and churches can only operate with a capacity of 30%.
The tightened restrictions will take place in the same way that the Korean Baseball Organization will start a seven-game championship round between NC Dinos and Doosan Bears on Tuesday night. Fans were allowed to participate in the game in a limited number in August, with participation levels reaching 50% prior to the strengthening measures.
Schools will also return to two-thirds capacity. Approximately 480,000 high school students are preparing to take the annual College Scholastic Ability Test on December 3rd. This is an all-day event that is considered essential to future success.
The enhanced measures are partly aimed at “creating a safe environment for students,” Park said. He added that South Korea is trying to avoid going to higher levels on the social distance scale to minimize its economic impact.
“We want to contain the virus here at level 1.5 and hope that the virus will be controlled within two weeks,” he said. “If it doesn’t contain a virus, it affects [the CSAT] And it will hurt many students. It will also pose greater financial difficulties for our citizens. “
The tightened regulations will be first enforced in Seoul and its surrounding Gyeonggi Province. Incheon, South Korea’s third-largest city, will adopt new measures on Monday, and Gangwon-do, east of Seoul, will have to decide whether to raise that level.
South Korea was the first country to spread coronavirus local infections following China in February, which occurred mainly in Daegu City in the southeastern part of the country. Authorities were able to contain the first wave through a system of aggressive and vigorous testing and tracking.
However, there were sporadic new outbreaks, such as a cluster tied to a nightclub in May and an anti-government rally around the church in Seoul in August.
Park said South Korea’s experience in dealing with recurring outbreaks would help curb new spreads.
“Korea is once again at a very important point,” he said. “But we faced repeated challenges and crises, and now we have great know-how and experience, and a sense of solidarity and cooperation among people.”
Since the start of the pandemic, 29,000 COVID-19 cases have occurred in South Korea, killing about 500 people, according to data compiled by researchers at Johns Hopkins University.
South Korea will tighten restrictions on COVID-19 after new cases increase
Source link South Korea will tighten restrictions on COVID-19 after new cases increase