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S. Korea reports first cases of Omicron variant: Analysis Updated: 2021-12-02 17:16:22 KST

For the first time, Omicron variant cases have been confirmed here in South Korea.
What's more concerning is potential further spread of this new variant.
And the country has added over 5-thousand new COVID-19 cases for two days in a row now.
For more, we have Professor David Kwak from Soon Chun Hyang University Hospital joining us.
Professor Kwak, welcome to the program.



There are growing concerns over further spread of the new variant within local communities.
We hear dozens of people have come into close contact with the Omicron-confirmed people.
Does spread of this new variant seem to be inevitable now?

South Korea, again, reported its highest COVID-19 tally today of more than 5-thousand.
What's your assessment on the situation overall?

The country eased restrictions and caseloads spiked.
The government will announce stricter disease-prevention measures tomorrow.
Some raise doubts whether re-opening is ever possible as long as the virus is around.
What's your opinion?

The country's full vaccination rate now stands at 80 percent but we are also witnessing breakthrough cases.
Health authorities strongly recommend an extra shot.
Any comment on that?

Current vaccines may not work against Omicron though it may help preventing severe symptoms.
Do we need a new vaccine targeting Omicron?

Professor Kwak, thank you for your insights. We appreciate it.
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