In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, South Korea has been repeatedly upheld for being an example country. Mike Ryan, head of the World Health Organization’s Health Emergencies Programme and President Trump, has praised South Korea for its early intervention and success in flattening the number of outbreaks.
According to WorldOMeter, the number of active cases has been decreasing substantially since the peak of the disease, making South Korea one of the two only highly impacted countries to have successfully mitigated the severe repercussions. Here’s how they did it.
From the day the first Coronavirus case from China was publicized, South Korean doctors immediately went to work on developing a test. The first test was developed in February and has since been improved. Today more than 10,000 tests are performed every day, according to Washington Post. Anyone who wants testing can go to one of the numerous popup sites. Sites that include phone booth and drive through testing for convenience.
Utilization of Software
When a national emergency like a pandemic happens, the South Korean government has the right to forgo the privacy rights of the individual to benefit the nation as a whole. This includes private tracking and the data usage of surveillance cameras, cellphones, and credit card transactions. With this data, the government can single out effected areas to disinfect and close to the public. They are also able to alarm the public when an infected individual doesn’t comply to quarantine restrictions.
Largely Available Protective Gear
One of the top priorities the Korean government has made is the provision of protective gear both for the common people and healthcare workers. In the hospitals, nurses and physicians are equipped with full protection including masks, shields, and guards to be exchanged for every patient.
The common people are recommended to wear masks out in public to prevent the spreading of disease. The government purchased masks to provide to pharmacies and pharmacies were restricted from raising mask prices.
Support for the Ill
When someone tests positive for the Coronavirus, he/she is given ample support. The South Korean government sends a box filled with necessary items for self-quarantine. This box includes food, medicine, masks, and cleansing tools. It also holds instructions for proper disposal of quarantine items and even a letter for the well-being of the ill personnel.
Besides receiving enough supportive items to least the two-week quarantine, each infected person gets a dedicated case officer. This officer checks up on the infected person twice a day to check their physical health and even provide encouragement.