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COVID-19 pandemic in S. Korea is gradually receding due to vaccinations : Health official Updated: 2021-10-19 12:25:56 KST

Now for more coverage of the local COVID-19 situation I have our Kim Yeon-seung here in the studio.
Welcome back Yeon-seung.

Happy to be here.

How are authorities here.. explaining the recent retreat in daily infections?

Well health officials have been trying to pinpoint all the factors that could have come into play, and they realized the indices on the frequency of how often people make social contact and how much people go out during the weekend have actually been quite high.
So it's unlikely that the drop in transmissions was brought about by social distancing or less contact.
Rather, health authorities are crediting the nation's high vaccination rate.
South Korea as of Tuesday morning has fully vaccinated around 65 percent of its total population.

Right but NOT ALL countries that boast high public inoculation rates have witnessed a decline in the daily tally right?

Yes, in some, but unfortunately, not all of them.
The UK on Monday reported its highest daily caseload since mid-July, with more than 49-thousand cases.
Unfortunately this is nothing new, as Britain has seen a 60 percent increase in COVID-19 infections in the past month.
Some health experts attribute the surge to the country's early lifting of COVID-19 restrictions, and the slow rollout of vaccines for children, which has led to a large number of new cases among children.
Japan on the other hand has witnessed a rather puzzling success in bringing down its number of COVID-19 infections.
They confirmed just 232 new cases on Monday.
It's the first time in more than a year that the daily count has been under 300, and a steep drop from the 20-thousand cases that the country was seeing early August.
Health experts don't know why yet.
They say it could be the high vaccination rate which is now close to 70 percent or the social distancing restrictions which mainly focused on shutting down night life,.. or it could be fewer testing.
Singapore also has a stellar vaccination rate, almost 85 percent of their population have been fully vaccinated.
But they've been seeing up to 25-hundred to over 3-thousand daily cases this month.

Going back to Singapore which you mentioned how is this sate faring after its transition to a strategy of living with COVID-19 back in the summer?

Right so, Singapore started easing their social distancing measures bit by bit since August.
But they've gone back on their policies, which have been derailed by a rebound in case counts.
Singapore's Prime Minister earlier this month addressed the nation to say that COVID-19 is no longer a dangerous disease and that their lives cannot be paralyzed by fear, because their vaccination campaign has succeeded and they have one of the world's lowest death rates from COVID-19.
The country seems determined to press ahead with their exit strategy, which includes limiting access to certain venues for the unvaccinated, no mandatory quarantine for close contact with a COVID-19 patient, and more at-home recovery.
They're also gradually opening borders and expanding quarantine exemptions for travelers.
I've mentioned the low caseloads in Japan, and in response to this, they're taking a slightly unconventional approach in their efforts to return to normal.
They're performing social experiments using proof of vaccinations.
So they're slowly lifting bans and limitations on stadiums and restaurants in designated areas to closely monitor the impact of these easing of measures.
For example they've opened up 730 more seats in the Toyota stadium in the Aichi Prefecture and completely lifted the cap on visitors and operating hours for 50 restaurants in Saitama Prefecture.
And through these precedents, a panel of experts are going to fully determine what policies the nation should introduce as they usher in a new normal.

Thank you for that report, Yeon-seung.
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