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Moon inspects military hospital treating COVID-19 patients

All News 15:03 March 02, 2020

SEOUL, March 2 (Yonhap) -- President Moon Jae-in on Monday visited a major South Korean military hospital offering medical services to soldiers and civilians infected with the new coronavirus, as the country has begun to mobilize military resources in earnest to fight the novel coronavirus.

He also met with a group of new graduates from the Korea Armed Forces Nursing Academy who are set to be dispatched to Daegu, the epicenter of the fast spread of the COVID-19 virus in the country.

Thousands of confirmed cases have been reported in the city of 2.4 million residents, 300 kilometers south of Seoul, and in nearby North Gyeongang Province. Most of the cases are apparently linked to a minor religious group, the Shincheonji Church of Jesus, whose members attended large, crowded services at a Daegu branch last month.

The government has designated the military hospital in Daejeon, 160km south of Seoul, as an institution specializing in responding to the infectious disease. The facilities, operated under the wing of the Armed Forces Medical Command, are in the process of expanding the number of beds to 303 from the current 98 to treat more people infected with the virus.

This file photo, dated Feb. 25, 2020, shows President Moon Jae-in (front, 2nd from L) talking with workers at Daegu Medical Center. (Yonhap)

Moon received a briefing on its operation and preparations to accommodate patients from Daegu and North Gyeongsang.

Moon then visited the Korea Armed Forces Nursing Academy in Daejeon, becoming the first sitting South Korean president to do so.

Seventy-five new nurse officers will be sent to Daegu soon for their first mission after graduating from the academy.

The president earlier ordered his administration to mobilize all available state resources to help contain the virus.

lcd@yna.co.kr
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