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People's Daily Online

S.Korea's COVID-19 cases rise to 7,979, death toll at 67

People's Daily Online

(Xinhua) 11:15, March 13, 2020

SEOUL, March 13 (Xinhua) -- South Korea confirmed 110 more cases of the COVID-19 compared to 24 hours ago as of midnight Friday local time, raising the total number of infections to 7,979.

One more death was reported, lifting the death toll to 67. The total fatality rate stood at 0.84 percent.

A total of 177 more patients were discharged from quarantine after making full recovery, pulling up the combined number to 510.

The Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC) decided to update the data once a day at 10:00 a.m. local time from March 10, after having announced it twice a day.

The virus infection soared for the past weeks, with 7,948 new cases reported from Feb. 19 to March 12. The country has raised its four-tier virus alert to the highest "red" level.

The total number of infections in Daegu, about 300 km southeast of Seoul, and its surrounding North Gyeongsang province increased to 5,928 and 1,147 respectively. It accounted for almost 90 percent of the total.

The numbers in Seoul and its adjacent Gyeonggi province came to 225 and 185 each.

Daegu became the epicenter of the viral spread here as the biggest cluster of infections was found in the metropolis with a 2.5 million population. Daegu has been designated by the government as a "special care zone."

The Daegu cluster was closely linked to the church services of a homegrown minor religious sect, called Sincheonji, in Daegu. Members of the sect are known to sit on the floor closely side by side during church services.

Since Jan. 3, the country has tested more than 248,000 people, among whom 222,728 tested negative for the virus and 17,940 were being checked.

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