Omicron dominance begins… “Expect 7,000 within this week”

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When a virus with an unfamiliar name appeared two years ago, we had no idea that it would change our lives so completely.

In the meantime, more than 700,000 people have been infected in Korea and more than 6,000 have died.

And the number of new infections, which had been on the decline, is now hitting the bottom and coming up.

The number increased by more than 1,000 from a week ago, but it is on the rise to 7,000 this week.

The government issued a warning that “Omicron has begun to establish itself as a dominant species,” and as a rule, it is a principle to treat Omicron patients at home.

First of all, this is reporter Kim A-young.

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This afternoon, a restaurant near the US military base in Pyeongtaek, Gyeonggi-do.

Even though it was lunchtime, the street was quiet and most of the restaurants were empty.

329 people have been confirmed in Pyeongtaek alone, including 90 US soldiers, and most of them are presumed to be infected with Omicron, but it is spreading to surrounding cities such as Hwaseong and Anseong.

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“Soldiers can’t eat outside (base) right now, so inside the (general) restaurant… there are no customers coming in. In the case of foreigners…”

In the Honam region, where Omicron has already become the dominant species, Gwangju recorded 300 daily confirmed cases for the first time.

Daycare centers and kindergartens in Gwangju City went on an emergency closure for two weeks, and the Jeonnam Provincial Office closed the entire office on the first floor as an employee was confirmed.

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“(At the nursing home) once (analyzed) the sample, it came out as Omicron here as well.”

The total number of new COVID-19 cases reached 5,805, entering the 5,000 level in 20 days and turning to an increasing trend.

The government said that Omicron’s dominance had begun, and expected that around the 21st the day after tomorrow, there would be around 7,000 confirmed cases.

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“During this three-week period of distance, including the Lunar New Year holiday, Omicron will replace Delta by 8-90%, and an increase in the number of confirmed cases is inevitable.”

If the number of confirmed cases exceeds 7,000, the Omicron response stage will be entered.

Asymptomatic persons under 65 years of age receive priority antigen testing rather than PCR testing, and local hospitals also participate in treatment.

The self-quarantine period for home treatment will also be shortened from 10 days to 7 days.

Today, when the number of confirmed cases exceeded 5,000, the government began preparations for the transition to the response stage.

First of all, he said that in the case of a confirmed case of Omicron mutation, if he is not a high-risk group, he will make the principle of home treatment rather than a living treatment center.

[손영래/중앙사고수습본부 사회전략반장]

“(Once the response phase begins), rather than strengthening social distancing measures, we will focus on blocking the infection of high-risk groups or high-risk groups with a high fatality rate.”

The government is expected to announce a detailed action plan for the response phase this week.

This is Kim Ah-young from MBC News.

Video coverage: Jung Min-hwan / Video editing: Park Hye-rin

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