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South Korea’s cumulative COVID-19 cases near 10 million

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People line up for COVID-19 tests South Korea

People line up for COVID-19 exams at a testing facility in Seoul, Sunday. | PHOTO: Yonhap through The Korea Herald/Asia News Network

SEOUL — As the extremely transmissible Omicron variant continues to surge, South Korea’s cumulative variety of COVID-19 infections nears 10 million for the reason that nation reported its first confirmed case round 26 months in the past.

According to the Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency‘s report on Sunday, the nation added 334,708 new COVID-19 cases through the 24 hours of Saturday.

The nation’s whole caseload neared 10 million at 9,373,646 as of midnight Saturday, accounting for some 20 p.c of the nation’s whole inhabitants of 51 million.

South Korea’s whole caseload remained under 1 million earlier than the Omicron variant grew to become the dominant pressure within the nation in February this yr.

On Feb. 2, the nation’s well being authorities reported that the nation’s cumulative variety of infections topped the 1 million mark for the primary time for the reason that nation reported its first an infection in January, 2020.

The cumulative variety of COVID-19 cases, nonetheless, skyrocketed throughout February and March below the grip of the extremely contagious Omicron variant.

On Feb. 28, the nation reported that its cumulative variety of infections surpassed 3 million. The determine continued to extend all through March to high 9 million as of midnight Friday.

Over the weekend, the variety of each day COVID-19 infections decreased, slowing down will increase within the whole caseload. The each day tally reported on Sunday was under 400,000 for the second straight day, dropping down from the day gone by’s 381,454 and 407,017 two days in the past.

If the Omicron wave continues to unfold on the present tempo, the whole caseload will surpass the 10 million mark in round two days and presumably attain 12.7 million by the top of this month.

Although the nation’s each day COVID-19 cases decreased over the previous two days, it’s nonetheless unsure if the nation’s each day infections will proceed its downward development all through the subsequent week, since each day cases are inclined to shrink over the weekend as a result of fewer exams.

Increases within the nation’s whole caseload may pace up as the federal government has determined to ease social distancing guidelines.

Starting Monday, the federal government will improve the restrict on non-public gatherings to eight folks from the present six, whereas sustaining the 11 p.m. curfew on companies.

The nation’s well being authorities count on the Omicron wave to start out receding beginning on Wednesday. However, some consultants argue that the Omicron wave won’t recede till a minimum of 25 p.c of the nation‘s inhabitants, or 15 million folks, turn into contaminated with the Omicron variant. Their arguments are based mostly on developments of the variant in different nations.

Meanwhile, the variety of COVID-19 associated deaths got here to 327 through the 24 hours of Saturday, the second-highest following 429 reported on Thursday. The demise toll reached 12,428, and the fatality charge stood at 0.13 p.c.

The variety of critically unwell sufferers got here to 1,033 throughout the identical interval, down from 1,049 a day earlier.

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