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S. Korea's new COVID-19 cases bounce back amid eased curbs

March 21, 2023 - 10:24 By Yonhap
A sign in a subway station in Seoul on Monday reads that the indoor mask mandate has been lifted on public transportation. (Yonhap)

South Korea's new COVID-19 cases rose back to the 12,000 level Tuesday, the day after the country lifted its mask mandate on public transportation.

The country reported 12,016 new COVID-19 infections, including 17 cases from overseas, bringing the total caseload to 30,714,976, the Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency (KDCA) said.

The Tuesday figure is up from Monday's nine-month low of 3,930.

The KDCA reported seven deaths from COVID-19, raising the death toll to 34,178. The number of critically ill patients stood at 128, up from 122 the previous day.

Health authorities are closely watching the country's COVID-19 cases after it scrapped the mask-wearing mandate on public transportation Monday.

Still, the mask mandate remains in place for medical facilities, pharmacies and other infection-prone places. Pharmacies in open public spaces, such as discount stores or train stations, are exempt from the requirement. (Yonhap)