Rising Infections Won't Stop Return to Normal, Gov't Pledges

  • By Bae Jun-yong

    November 02, 2021 11:17

    Korea will gradually return to normal as planned even if infections rise to 10,000 a day, an official at the Ministry of Health and Welfare promised Monday.

    The number of daily COVID-19 cases has been rising again to around 2,000 a day since last week as Koreans threw caution to the wind ahead of the phased return to normal that started Monday.

    Youngsters drink in a beer garden in Seoul's new trendy hot spot of Euljiro on Monday.

    But the government is determined to shift its focus from counting infections to severe cases and deaths because the vaccination rate has increased.

    "The ratio of COVID patients between unvaccinated and fully vaccinated people is about 70 to 30. If this trend continues, the medical system will be capable of handling some 5,000 new cases a day," Son Young-rae of the ministry said.

    He added the government will not impose a "circuit breaker" lockdown even if daily infections reach 10,000. "But we're going to take emergency measures if the medical system is overloaded and an appropriate medical response is impossible because of a sudden rise in infections," he said.

    On Tuesday morning the tally of new coronavirus infections stood at 1,589.

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