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Some 14,000 people in self-quarantine over COVID-19

All News 16:32 March 30, 2020

SEOUL, March 30 (Yonhap) -- Over 14,000 people are now in self-quarantine here to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus, the country's health authorities said Monday.

In South Korea, those who are awaiting test results after showing symptoms of viral infection are required to be self-quarantined. Arrivals to the country and those who have come in contact with COVID-19 patients are also ordered to self-quarantine.

"When the country was going through the 'spike' period of a large number of people testing positive for COVID-19, there were upward of 34,000 in isolation," a health official at the headquarters said. "The figure has dropped off significantly, with regional governments now fully capable of dealing with the situation."

This notice on the entrance of a private academy in northern Seoul informs students to bring their own masks to class to prevent viral infection on March 30, 2020. Around 200 students were placed in self-quarantine after a lecturer tested positive for COVID-19 at a nearby academy. (Yonhap)

In the past week, South Korea has engaged in strict social distancing to curb the spread of the novel coronavirus. All arrivals from Europe and the United States have been ordered to go into self-quarantine for 14 days, starting on March 22 and Friday, respectively.

The country will pay for COVID-19 testing and treatment, but everyone must pay for self-quarantine-related accommodation expenses.

While some foreign arrivals have not followed the isolation rules, these cases involved people who arrived before the stronger quarantine measures were announced.

Jeong Eun-kyeong, head of the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC), emphasized that it is everyone's duty to adhere to social distancing guidelines. She pointed out that it only takes a few people to cause the coronavirus to spread.

As of Sunday, South Korea reported 9,661 COVID-19 cases out of 395,194 people tested, with the death toll standing at 158.

yonngong@yna.co.kr
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