- A mass testing system has helped the country suffer lower COVID-19 death rates than other developed countries so far without severe lockdowns.
SEOUL: South Korea reported 1,150 new coronavirus cases for Monday, the day it implemented the toughest curbs it can apply on residents and business activity in Seoul as the country battles its worst-ever outbreak, spurred by the highly contagious Delta variant.
Data from the Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency (KDCA) on Tuesday showed the daily tally topped 1,000 for a seventh consecutive day, though it was below last week's peak at 1,378.
The latest clusters have seen far fewer serious infections than earlier ones, with many older and more vulnerable South Koreans now vaccinated against the virus. The new cases brought South Korea's total tally to 170,296, with 2,048 deaths, KDCA data showed.
A mass testing system has helped the country suffer lower COVID-19 death rates than other developed countries so far without severe lockdowns.
But the new wave of infections prompted the government to impose the toughest restrictions yet in capital Seoul and neighbouring areas starting Monday, including a ban on gatherings of more than two people after 6 p.m.
About 11.6% of the country's 52 million population has completed vaccination, including receiving both shots for products requiring two doses, while 30.4% have received one dose, according to the KDCA.