South Korea declares Daegu city a 'special zone' over surge in coronavirus cases that threaten to overwhelm region's health system

South Korea declared the southeast city of Daegu and the surrounding region a 'special management zone' after a surge in virus cases that city officials say threaten to overwhelm the region’s health system.

The Associated Press February 21, 2020 08:44:06 IST
South Korea declares Daegu city a 'special zone' over surge in coronavirus cases that threaten to overwhelm region's health system
  • South Korea declared the southeast city of Daegu and the surrounding region a 'special management zone' after a surge in virus cases that city officials say threaten to overwhelm the region’s health system

  • Prime Minister Chung Se-kyun said the national government will concentrate its support to the region to ease a shortage in sickbeds, medical personnel and equipment

  • The surge of infections in the Daegu area and several cases in the capital, Seoul, where infection routes weren’t immediately traceable, forced government officials to acknowledge Thursday

Seoul: South Korea on Friday declared the southeast city of Daegu and the surrounding region a “special management zone” after a surge in virus cases that city officials say threaten to overwhelm the region’s health system.

Prime Minister Chung Se-kyun said the national government will concentrate its support to the region to ease a shortage in sickbeds, medical personnel and equipment.

South Korea declares Daegu city a special zone over surge in <span class=coronavirus cases that threaten to overwhelm regions health system" width="380" height="285" />

Representational image. Getty Images

“A month into the (COVID-19) outbreak, we have entered an emergency phase,” Chung said. “Our efforts until now had been focused on blocking the illness from entering the country. But we will now shift the focus on preventing the illness from spreading further in local communities.”

Sixty-nine cases of COVID-19 , as well as the country’s first death of a virus patient, have been confirmed in the southeast city of Daegu and nearby areas over Wednesday and Thursday, a sudden jump that raised fears that the outbreak is getting out of control.

The surge of infections in the Daegu area and several cases in the capital, Seoul, where infection routes weren’t immediately traceable, forced government officials to acknowledge Thursday for the first time that the virus has begun to circulate in the local population.

Daegu Mayor Kwon Young-jin on Thursday urged the city’s 2.5 million people to stay home and wear masks even indoors if possible.

The Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said a South Korean man, believed to be about 63 years old, died at a hospital near the city on Wednesday and posthumously tested positive for the virus.

South Korea has so far reported 104 cases of the illness that began in China, where more than 2,000 patients have died.

Updated Date:

also read

WHO COVID-19 origins report: What are WHO's four theories on the emergence of SARS-CoV-2?
science

WHO COVID-19 origins report: What are WHO's four theories on the emergence of SARS-CoV-2?

A joint statement by 14 countries states that they don't believe the conditions under which the report was written was "independent and objective".

Six states say COVID-19 vaccine stocks petering out; Maharashtra laments getting 7.5 lakh doses as UP gets 48 lakh
India

Six states say COVID-19 vaccine stocks petering out; Maharashtra laments getting 7.5 lakh doses as UP gets 48 lakh

An analysis of available data suggests that while India is administering 34-35 lakh doses daily, its daily production capacity is no more than 26 lakh doses at present. And this is when SII is prioritising India's needs over its global obligations, as a stopgap measure

Amid surge in coronavirus cases, Odisha govt seals border with Chhattisgarh
India

Amid surge in coronavirus cases, Odisha govt seals border with Chhattisgarh

Official sources said the COVID-19 situation in Nuapada district, bordering Chhattisgarh, has been categorised as 'critical'