South Korea Reports 229 Cases In 1 Day On 22 Feb
South Korea’s Covid-19 statistics are growing so drastically, that they are reporting daily cases twice a day now.
Just Saturday morning (22 Feb), the country reported a staggering amount of 142 new Covid-19 infections, and a second death.
And as of 4.30pm, another 87 cases are confirmed. This brings the nationwide tally to 433, reports Channel NewsAsia (CNA).
Here’s a roundup of the latest updates.
New cases in South Korea linked to Cheongdo hospital
Earlier, we learnt that the sudden spike in today’s cases was traced back to a hospital in Cheongdo, located roughly 25km south of Daegu city.
92 of the first 142 cases were linked to the place, according to Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Seoul’s vice health minister Kim Gang-lip was quoted as saying,
Most of the hospital’s patients who have been diagnosed are those who had been staying as inpatients for mental illnesses.
Daegu church was first known Covid-19 hotbed
In the last few days, Daegu was the first known hotbed of Covid-10 in South Korea, after over 150 members of Shincheonji Church of Jesus were infected.
A worker disinfecting a bus departing to Daegu as preventive step against Covid-19
Image sourced via AFP
It all started with a 61-year-old woman who developed a fever on 10 Feb.
Strangely, she still attended at least 4 church services before testing positive for Covid-19.
Shincheonji’s leader Lee Man-hee had called the mass outbreak linked to the church “the Devil’s deed.”
Coincidentally, Cheongdo is Lee’s birthplace, reports CNA.
Shincheonji had often been criticised of being a cult. Many pointed the finger to Lee, claiming that he once donned Jesus Christ’s mantle and “will take 144,000 people with him to heaven on the day of judgement.”
Shincheonji offered nationwide apology
Following the massive outbreak, Seoul authorities have put a stop to public rallies at 3 locations, citing health and safety reasons.
Shincheonji reportedly apologised for the outbreak, and has since suspended its worship services and gatherings across South Korea.
We are deeply sorry that because of one of our members, who thought of her condition as a cold because she had not travelled abroad, led to many in our church being infected and thereby caused concern to the local community.
Worst is unlikely over for South Korea
As Singapore continues to report a downward trend in infections for 2 consecutive days, it’s worrisome that Asian countries like South Korea and Japan are now most vulnerable to Covid-19.
We trust that South Korean authorities are doing all they can to contain the highly infectious virus.
We’ll just have to observe the nation’s precautionary measures for now.
Featured image adapted from AFP.
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