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(LEAD) S. Korea reports 105 new virus cases to total 9,583 as fully recovered cases top 5,000

All News 11:54 March 29, 2020

(ATTN: UPDATES with S. Korea's cure rate of 52.5 pct and other details in paras 5-7)

SEOUL, March 29 (Yonhap) -- South Korea reported 105 new cases of the coronavirus Sunday, bringing the nation's total to 9,583, but the number of fully recovered cases rose more than twice as fast as new infections to top 5,000 in total, officials said.

The death toll rose by eight to 152, according to the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC).

South Korea's southeastern city of Daegu and neighboring North Gyeongsang Province -- the nation's two worst-affected regions -- reported 25 of the 105 new cases.

Medical professionals wearing protective gear are seen walking into a hospital in South Korea's southeastern city of Daegu on March 27, 2020. (Yonhap)

An additional 222 patients have been released following full recovery, bringing the number of total cured people to 5,033, the KCDC said.

The KCDC said South Korea's cure rate for people infected with the virus is 52.5 percent, an achievement that South Korean officials hailed in their fight against the contagious respiratory illness.

On Saturday, the number of cured people exceeded the number of quarantined patients for the first time since Jan. 20, when the virus was first detected on South Korean soil.

The agency said the number of imported cases came to 412 out of the 9,583 total confirmed cases.

South Korea has strengthened social distancing through April 5 to contain the spread of the virus that emerged in China late last year.

The government asked people to stay at home and refrain from activities that could cause close contact in enclosed places, such as religious gatherings and indoor sports activities.

South Korea has enforced a two-week quarantine period and virus tests for all long-term arrivals from Europe, regardless of symptoms, in an effort to contain imported virus cases.


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