(Dan Tri) – The rapidly increasing number of severe cases and deaths from Covid-19 is putting pressure on the hospital system and cremation service in South Korea.
According to data from the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (KDCA), on March 22, the country recorded 490,881 cases. Covid-19 new, the second highest compared to the peak of 621,205 cases on March 16. This number brings the total number of people infected with Covid-19 in Korea since the beginning of the epidemic to over 10.4 million cases.
In the past 24 hours, South Korea also recorded an additional 291 deaths from Covid-19, bringing the total number of deaths from the pandemic here to 13,432.
The rate of infection and death from Covid-19 in Korea is still much lower than elsewhere in the world world because 87% of Korea’s 52 million people have received two full doses of the Covid-19 vaccine, 63% have received booster shots.
However, the number of deaths has nearly doubled in just the past six weeks, with the number of deaths on March 18 reaching a peak of 429. The sudden increase in the number of deaths caused an overload at crematoriums and funeral homes across South Korea.
The South Korean government earlier this week directed 60 crematoriums nationwide to extend their operating hours to increase the number of cremations, and requested nearly 1,200 funeral homes with an expanded capacity to store about 8,700 bodies. basis.
“We are discussing measures to increase the capacity of crematoriums to reduce inconvenience for people. The capacity of crematoriums is increasing but there are local variations,” Son said. Young-rae, an official from the Korean Ministry of Health said.
South Korean authorities have now increased the total cremation capacity nationwide from 1,000 cases to 1,400 cases per day starting last week. However, in some densely populated places such as the Seoul metropolitan area, the overcrowding situation has not been completely overcome.
According to South Korean Health Ministry data, 28% of crematoriums in Seoul city are operating at 114.2 percent of capacity, while in other areas such as Sejong and Jeju around 83 percent.
To overcome overcrowding in some localities, crematoriums in places that are not overcrowded are now allowed to “receive applications” from other places.
In addition to the number of deaths, the number of serious illnesses is also on the rise in South Korea. Park Hyang, another official of the country’s Ministry of Health, said that the number of severe Covid-19 cases in South Korea has exceeded 1,000 in the past two weeks and is forecast to reach 2,000 by early April.
As of today, March 23, about 64.4% of hospital beds in ICUs were filled, compared with 59% two weeks ago.
“The health system is under great pressure although the situation is still under control. We will focus more on high-risk groups, check regularly so that there are no blind spots (in coping). translation)”, Mr. Park said.
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