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South Korea Imposes 10-Day Quarantine Over Omicron Fears

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South Korea Imposes 10-Day Quarantine Over Omicron Fears

Coronavirus cases in South Korea reached a new high on Thursday, with authorities suspending exemptions for fully vaccinated inbound travellers for two weeks in an attempt to combat the Omicron variant.

South Korea’s disease control agency (KDCA) reported 5,266 cases on Wednesday, a day after the daily total broke 5,000 for the first time amid growing concerns over a sharp increase in patients with severe symptoms.

Starting Friday, South Korea will require a 10-day quarantine for all inbound travellers for two weeks, ending the exemptions granted earlier to fully vaccinated people.

South Korea confirmed its first five cases of the Omicron variant late on Wednesday, including a fully vaccinated Nigerian couple and two family members, along with a friend.

The country has fully vaccinated nearly 92 percent of adults and is now working on vaccinating children and implementing a booster program. However, experts have warned that cases may still rise due to the transmission of the potentially more virulent variant.

Omicron was designated a variant of concern by WHO’s Technical Advisory Group on Virus Evolution (TAG-VE) on 26 November 2021. According to evidence presented to the TAG-VE, Omicron has several mutations that may impact how it behaves, such as how quickly it spreads or the severity of the disease it causes.

A total of 457,612 infections resulted in 3,705 deaths in South Korea.

 

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