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Virus death toll experiences double-digit rise for 2nd day, hospital bed shortage looms

All News 10:02 December 16, 2020

SEOUL, Dec. 16 (Yonhap) -- South Korea's coronavirus death toll continued to rise Wednesday, posting a double-digit increase in virus fatalities for the second straight day as critically ill patients piled up amid spiking virus cases.

The Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency (KDCA) said the country reported 12 additional deaths from COVID-19, raising the total to 612.

The country reported a daily high of 13 COVID-19 deaths Tuesday.

Citizens wait in line to receive COVID-19 tests at a makeshift clinic in central Seoul on Dec. 15, 2020. (Yonhap)

The number of seriously or critically ill COVID-19 patients came to 226, sharply up 21 from the previous day, according to the KDCA.

The country continues to witness a double-digit increase of COVID-19 patients in critical condition due to spiking new cases.

Health authorities have warned the death toll could spike in the coming days, as the fatality rate for COVID-19 patients is especially high among the older population

The average fatality rate for COVID-19 patients came to 1.35 percent as of Tuesday, compared with a whopping 15.02 percent among those aged 80 or older, the KDCA said.

The country added 1,078 more COVID-19 cases on Wednesday, including 1,054 local infections, raising the total caseload to 45,442, the KDCA said.

Wednesday's daily number is higher than the previous record of 1,030 on Sunday, which was the first time that the 1,000 mark was breached.

khj@yna.co.kr
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