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Discussions underway for S. Korea's exit strategy from COVID-19 despite continuing spread Updated: 2021-10-07 17:08:50 KST

South Korea reported 2,4-hundred-27 new cases on Thursday, with the fourth wave showing no signs of slowing down.
But discussions on shifting towards an exit strategy continue.
During a government audit on Thursday, authorities explained how they're trying to make sure a transition to "living with the virus" is safe.

The availability of treatments will be a factor and authorities said they are doing their best to secure as many as possible.

We are currently in discussions with drugmakers to make additional purchases of oral treatments."

On the previous day, Prime Minister Kim Boo-kyum said that the country is contracted to buy COVID-19 pills from U.S. drugmaker Merck and enough for around 20-thousand people.

For a stable transition, the government is also trying to vaccinate young children, despite some lawmakers questioning the necessity citing a low chance of them of becoming seriously ill.

"Those with diabetes, asthma and other conditions could become seriously ill if infected, so we very much recommend them to get vaccinated Also, in terms of young children, we must consider the potential damage on their mental health and academic growth ."

Also as part of its exit strategy, the country is considering donating or re-selling its surplus vaccines to other countries after vaccinating the majority of its population.
Potential countries on the list will include Vietnam, with President Moon Jae-in pledging to provide 1 million doses during the recent UN General Assembly.

"Vaccine assistance has been talked about between the leaders of South Korean and Vietnam, and working level talks are currently underway. We are planning for that to happen within this month."

"The government has been saying that an exit strategy can be adopted when 70 percent of the population is fully vaccinated.
And at Thursday’s audit, it further narrowed down the timeline. which will be November 9th ? roughly two weeks after those people have received their second shots.
Lee Kyung-eun, Arirang News. "
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