South Korea has rolled out a series of updates to its COVID-19 prevention measures.
Starting May 23rd, inbound travelers to South Korea will be allowed to submit rapid antigen test results to verify that they have not contracted COVID-19.
Currently, a PCR test result must be provided before entering the country, and people are required to get tested within 48 hours prior to departure.
For rapid antigen tests,.. the requirement is within 24 hours.
However, travelers arriving from countries that do not recognize rapid antigen test results, like Indonesia and Japan,.. will still need to show results of PCR tests.
Authorities are also reducing the number of required tests from the current three to two,.. starting June first.
Children aged twelve and under arriving with a fully vaccinated parent or guardian will be exempt from taking COVID tests.
Until then, only children aged 6 and under can freely enter the country without getting tested.
In line with the increasing demand for overseas travel, the government announced that it will expand the number of international flights by 2-hundred 30 a week in June.
This means more than 7-hundred overseas flights will be available per week starting next month.
On the treatment front, authorities have secured an additional one million courses of oral COVID-19 drugs.
They also revealed plans to expand eligible recipients,.. by lowering the age bracket.
Currently, only those aged 60 and above, and people with underlying health conditions above 40 can receive COVID-19 pills.
However, authorities are planning to allow people aged 12 and above with underlying diseases to also receive oral treatment.
These efforts come as South Korea continues to see a decline in the number of new infections.
The country on Friday reported over 32-thousand 4-hundred new cases,.. down by more than 3-thousand 4-hundred from the previous day.
The single day average for this week declined by more than 12-percent compared to the week before.
The number of severely ill patients remained in the 3-hundreds for the fourth straight day, and deaths, below one hundred per day for the past two weeks.
Choi Min-jung, Arirang News.