Lockdown Extended for Another 2 Weeks

      August 06, 2021 12:57

      The current lockdown has been extended for another two weeks as the highly infectious Delta variant is now the dominant strain here and infection rates have not been contained.

      The government on Friday said the extension is unavoidable as infections show no signs of easing, hovering around 1,700 for the last three days. Daily new cases have been in four-digit numbers since July 6, and more of them are occurring outside the capital region.

      Severe cases also increased to 369 on Wednesday, up 40 from the previous day. "The number of severe patients has risen by 10 to 20 each day since mid-July," an official of the Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency said.

      Worries are mounting over a shortage of hospital beds. As of 5 p.m. Wednesday, 476 or 59.4 percent of 801 nationwide hospital beds for severe cases were occupied.

      People wait to get tested for coronavirus at a makeshift facility in Seoul on Thursday. /Newsis

      Meanwhile, the government said it has amped up the server of its vaccination booking site to prevent further overload. From next Monday, 1.9 million people aged 18-49 can make bookings on dates matching the last number of their birthday.

      But they will not be allowed to try and book using several devices at once or to make proxy bookings.

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