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(LEAD) S. Korea imposes special quarantine measures on all arrivals from abroad

All News 11:35 March 19, 2020

(ATTN: UPDATES with more details in paras 5-6)

SEOUL, March 19 (Yonhap) -- South Korea started imposing special quarantine measures for all new arrivals from abroad on Thursday as it guards against imported cases of the novel coronavirus, the country's health authorities said.

South Koreans and foreign nationals alike are subject to the strict measure, and all entrants to the country must undergo fever checks at air terminals and sea ports, according to the health authorities.

Those who have a cough, a sore throat and other symptoms believed to be related to COVID-19 must write down their condition on a health questionnaire. All arrivals are required to provide the address they will be staying at and contact information such as a phone number to authorities.

People also have to download a self-check app that will allow them to regularly report their state of health online. Those who feel unwell for two consecutive days will be contacted by a community health service center that will determine if the person needs to be tested for viral infection.

People arriving on a plane from Paris, France, wait in line to go through a special quarantine screening process at Incheon International Airport, west of Seoul, on March 16, 2020. (Yonhap)

There have been a steady number of people testing positive for the virus who recently came from foreign countries, with 16 cases reported Saturday through Wednesday, the Central Disaster Management Headquarters said.

South Korea has reported a total of 8,565 novel coronavirus cases as of Thursday, with the first case confirmed on Jan. 20.

Seoul earlier imposed tighter quarantine checks on people arriving from countries most affected by the pandemic, including China, Japan, Iran, Hong Kong and Macau and all European nations.

The World Health Organization announced that as of Wednesday that there were over 185,000 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in 141 countries, with the combined death toll surpassing 7,700.

yonngong@yna.co.kr
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