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Welfare, Health & Security News

  • Special Disease Control and Prevention Measures of the Seoul Metropolitan Government Following the Application of Level 2 Social Distancing Starting on July 1

  • Welfare, Health & Security News SMG 943

    Level 2 social distancing will be applied to the Seoul metropolitan area starting in July according to the newly adjusted social distancing measures. For two weeks (July 1–14), up to 6 persons can gather in private gatherings, and vaccinated persons will be exempted from the capacity limit for private gatherings and events. The Seoul Metropolitan Government (SMG) will check the disinfection of multi-purpose facilities, including restaurants, cafes and Internet cafes, and extend the operating hours of designated screening centers in public health centers. Additionally, designated screening centers will be installed in areas upon occurrence of collective infection. The SMG will make full preparations to pursue its special disease control and prevention measures by reinforcing COVID-19 test capacity and conducting site inspection in order to stably implement new social distancing measures.

    Starting in July, social distancing will be adjusted from five levels to four levels. The Seoul metropolitan area will apply level 2 while other regions will apply level 1. Basic COVID-19 protocol for individuals will be strengthened while regulations on the economic activity of the self-employed will be minimized.

    The SMG will apply level 2 social distancing and allow private gatherings for up to 6 persons for two weeks (July 1–14). Vaccinated persons are exempted from the mandatory mask-wearing outdoors. However, they still have to wear a mask in crowded places, such as concerts, events and rallies as well as an outdoor baseball/soccer stadiums, performance halls, amusement parks, and outdoor shopping venues, including markets. Regardless of whether one is vaccinated, one should wear a mask indoors.

    There will be no restriction on operating hours for multi-purpose facilities, such as movie theaters, Internet cafes, amusement arcades, private academies, reading rooms, amusement parks, beauty salons, and large supermarkets. However, dining in at restaurants and cafes is allowed until 12 AM, after which only take-outs and delivery are permitted.

    Entertainment facilities for adults, hold ‘em arcades/pubs, colatecs, dance halls, and singing rooms can operate until 12 AM. No meetings or events with more than 100 persons are allowed, and assemblies with more than 50 are not permitted for two weeks (July 1–14) according to the step-by-step measures.

    Before and After the Newly Adjusted Disease Control and Prevention Measures

    Before and After the Newly Adjusted Disease Control and Prevention Measures
    Category Before After
    Level 1 Level 2 Level 1 Level 2
    Indoor sports facilities (e.g. gyms, GX studios) 1 person per 6m2 1 person per 8m2 1 person per 4m2 1 person per 6m2
    Party rooms No restriction No rentals or use for parties (level 2-4) No restriction Compliance of capacity limit for private gatherings; no entry after 10PM (levels 2–4)
    Vaccinated persons exempted from capacity count for gatherings, meetings and events Exempted from capacity count for assemblies, meetings and events Exempted from capacity count for assemblies, meetings and events. However, applied to demonstrations and rallies.

    Extension of Operating Hours of Designated Screening Centers in Public Health Centers, and Establishment of Designated Screening Centers In Case of Collective Infections

    The SMG will extend the operating hours of designated screening centers in public health centers until 9 PM on weekdays and 6 PM on weekends. In addition, in case of a collective infection, on-site designated screening centers will be installed for immediate testing.

    Special disease control and prevention measures will be implemented for high-risk facilities, such as private academies and entertainment facilities for adults. Workers of private academies will be selected as the priority recipients for vaccination. Designated screening centers will be installed at areas where private academies are densely clustered to actively encourage the testing of symptomatic individuals. For entertainment facility workers, mandatory preemptive inspections are conducted when social distancing is upgraded to level 3 or higher.

    For the stable settlement of the reformed social distancing, disinfection inspections will be conducted on private multi-purpose facilities such as restaurants, cafes, and private academies from July 1 to 14. From July 5 to 18, the SMG, together with autonomous districts and the Seoul Metropolitan Police Agency, will implement intensive inspections of entertainment facilities for adults, which are exempted from the ban on gatherings. Seven areas clustered with entertainment facilities will be selected to check the operation time and distance between tables.

    A campaign will also be held to raise public awareness about ventilation and disinfection. The SMG will emphasize the importance of ventilation and disinfection as the amount of movement and contact will increase following the reform of social distancing. The SMG will prepare recommendations for the “Seoul-type ventilation lifestyle” and conduct a large-scale campaign. Unless there are special hindrance factors, such as noise, windows and doors should be kept open. If it is unavailable, it is recommended to ventilate the facility at least 10 minutes every hour.

    ☞ Seoul Launches Citywide Window Ventilation Campaign to Encourage Ventilating for +10 Min. Every Hour
    Link (English):
    http://english.seoul.go.kr/seoul-launches-citywide-window-ventilation-campaign-to-encourage-ventilating-for-10-min-every-hour/

    For basements without windows or facilities where it is difficult to open windows, it is recommended to open windows and doors connected to the passage and to operate the ventilation fan. Opening some windows is encouraged when operating the air conditioner. The SMG has plans to use card news and webtoons to promote ventilation rules and proper disinfection methods.