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S. Korea to implement 'vaccine passes' starting next week Updated: 2021-10-27 10:41:04 KST

Now come next Monday a number of establishments here in the country deemed high-risk will require proof of vaccination for access.
For more I have Choi Min-jung here in the studio.
Min-jung welcome.

Thank you for having me.

First then what option is there for those who are unvaccinated?

Well, if you haven't been vaccinated, then you will need to submit negative PCR test results.

This also applies to those who have only received the first shot of a two-dose vaccine, like Pfizer's or Moderna's.
And even if you got your second dose, at least two weeks must have passed.
Otherwise, you would also be required to get a PCR test.
In order for the results to be valid, they must have been tested within the previous 48 hours.

Regarding PCR tests, authorities are expecting a spike in the number of people getting tested as cases are expected to rise amid the lifting of many restrictions.
To prevent overcrowding, they are considering a PCR testing fee, but the tests will remain free of charge for the time being.

Besides this, there was also some confusion as to whether a vaccine pass is needed to enter hospitals.
Health authorities on Tuesday clarified that people will NOT need one when going to see the doctor.
However, vaccine passes WILL be mandatory for visitations and also for caregivers.

I see.
Overseas then I understand the U.S. has tightened its travel rules with Korea?

Right, so the U.S. this month bumped up its travel advisory for Korea to level three.

This means that people visiting from the U.S., should reconsider travel to Korea.
It's the second highest level in its four-tier system, indicating a serious outbreak of COVID-19.
It was upgraded from level one to level two in August, when the fourth wave of infections broke out here in Korea.

For Korean nationals entering the U.S., they will now need a vaccine pass.
Up until now, only negative test results had been required.
But, with these latest changes only fully-vaccinated travelers will be allowed to enter the U.S., starting on November 8th.

Meanwhile, the WHO emergency committee insists that countries should not require proof of vaccination as the only condition for international travel.
They recommend making changes to testing or quarantine requirements instead as many countries do not have equal access to vaccines.

Thank you for now Min-jung but do stay for the broader talks with Soa.

Thank you.
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