On Friday, South Korea outlined guidelines for a two-year return to a post-coronavirus normality including flexible working, bookings on public transport and quick restaurants meals in a country that has been a role model in containing COVID-19.
Just six new cases have been reported by the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC) which is the lowest since the pandemic started in South Korea. The death toll remained at 240 with no new deaths and the authorities are expecting the cases will drop to zero in the coming days.
In controlling the spread of the virus, the rapid testing has played a vital role apart from social distancing and lockdowns. “Some experts predict COVID-19 will stay for as long as two years, and we have to accept the reality that we can’t go back to pre-COVID-19 life during that time,” Vice Health Minister Kim Gang-lip told a briefing.
“The government is preparing a transition to a sustainable routine distancing scheme with the goal of carrying out regular social and economic activity and preventing COVID-19 infections at the same time,” he said.
A code of conduct has been detailed in the guidelines in areas like shopping, restaurants, transportation. It will include several general rules like washing hands, maintaining distance and regular temperature checks and disinfection.
Wearing a mask is mandatory in public transport and seat booking will be available for empty rows. Mobile payments will be used for taxis. People were urged to spend minimal time at restaurants and cafes. In shopping malls customers were restricted to trial and advised to maintain at least 1 metre distance while check outs.