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(LEAD) S. Korea reports fewer than 20 virus cases for 3rd day

All News 10:45 April 20, 2020

(ATTN: RECASTS headline; ADDS details throughout)

SEOUL, April 20 (Yonhap) -- South Korea reported 13 more cases of the new coronavirus on Monday, bringing the nation's total infections to 10,674.

It marked the third day in a row that the country's new virus infections stayed below 20, according to the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC).

South Korea recorded single-digit new cases on Sunday for the first time in two months with eight, which also marked a drastic drop from the Feb. 29 peak of 909 new cases. The country confirmed its first COVID-19 infection on Jan. 20.

Of the new cases, seven came from overseas, the KCDC said.

Buoyed by the signs of a slowdown, the country on Sunday said it would maintain the social distancing drive against the coronavirus by two more weeks until early May with less intensity, easing the guidelines for religious gatherings and recruitment tests.

Medical workers prepare to work a shift at Keimyung University Daegu Dongsan Hospital, where coronavirus patients are hospitalized, in the southeastern city of Daegu on April 19, 2020. (Yonhap)

Patients in their 20s accounted for the largest portion of 27.4 percent, followed by patients in their 50s and 40s with 18.2 percent and 13.2 percent, respectively.

The nation's death toll from the coronavirus, which emerged in China late last year, rose by two to 236, the authorities said.

South Korea's COVID-19 fatality rate reached 2.21 percent. The rate, however, came to nearly 10 percent for patients in their 70s and 23 percent for those in their 80s.

In total, 8,114 people in South Korea have recovered from the virus, rising 72 from a day earlier.

Daegu, the nation's worst virus-hit region that accounts for around 64 percent of the total cases, added one new case. Its surrounding North Gyeongsang Province reported two new cases.

The total number of cases reported in Daegu and North Gyeongsang Province reached 6,833 and 1,361, respectively.

Seoul, the most populous city of South Korea, reported no additional cases, with the surrounding Gyeonggi Province adding two new COVID-19 infections.

Visitors take a stroll at a park in Yeouido, western Seoul, on April 19, 2020. (Yonhap)

The capital city has reported 624 cases so far, taking up less than 6 percent of the total.

The number of imported cases reached 1,006, with South Korean nationals responsible for more than 90 percent.

The KCDC said 418 were detected at border checkpoints, while 588 were identified by municipal health authorities.

The country has carried out 563,035 tests so far since Jan. 3, up 3,926 from a day earlier, and 8,114 patients have been discharged from hospitals.

colin@yna.co.kr
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