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(5.3) Regular Briefing of Central Disaster and Safety Countermeasure Headquarters on COVID-19

  • Date : 2020-05-12
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(5.3) Regular Briefing of Central Disaster and Safety Countermeasure Headquarters on COVID-19

- ▲ Transition from social distancing to distancing in daily life -

□ The Central Disaster and Safety Countermeasure Headquarters held a meeting today presided over by Head Chung Sekyun (Prime Minister) along with the central government and 17 cities and provinces to discuss agendas including ▲ policy direction and plan for distancing in daily life at a video conference room in Government Complex Seoul.

□ Head Chung emphasized, at the meeting, that although there are risks to be endured by moving on to “distancing in daily life” from May 6, the government is pushing for “distancing in daily life” with the aim of making disease prevention and control compatible with daily life such as economic activities while managing risks and preparing for possible contingencies.

○ In addition, he asked that the heads of metropolitan and provincial governments actively exercise their authority over administrative orders at their discretion if different standards need to be applied due to differences in quarantine situations in each region.

○ He also directed that the related ministries should prepare and manage more thoroughly than before as the risk of foreign inflow has increased although the situation of the domestic outbreak has stabilized with the number of infected cases in local communities decreasing.

1. Policy direction and plan for distancing in daily life

□ The Central Disaster and Safety Countermeasure Headquarters announced that it would end the “social distancing” campaign and implement “distancing in daily life” scheme, starting from May 6.

○ This is because ▲ the number of newly confirmed patients, ▲ the number of cluster outbreaks, ▲ the rate of cases with unidentified infection route, and ▲ the management rate in the quarantine network have significantly stabilized for about two weeks since April 19 when the social distancing was extended.

<Comparison of two weeks before and after extending social distancing>

April 5 ~ April 18

April 19~May 21)

Newly confirmed patients

35.5 people

9.1 people

Cluster outbreaks2)

(based on newly confirmed cases)

4 cases

4 cases

Rate of infections with unidentified route



Management rate within the quarantine network3)

80% or over

80% or over

1) The figure does not include three cases which occurred in Daegu as of 00:00 on May 3.

2) The number of cluster outbreaks is based on the date it is notified (the number of newly confirmed patients and the rate of infections with unidentified route is based on the date it is reported)

3) Management rate within the quarantine network: the rate of confirmed patients who are placed under self-quarantine out of newly confirmed cases

○ In the future, the quarantine authorities, together with experts, will evaluate the risk of COVID-19 situation periodically and comprehensively with aims to maintain ▲ an average of less than 50 new patients per day, ▲ less than 5% of cases of unidentified infection route, ▲ the number and size of the cluster outbreak, and ▲ 80% or more of the management rate within the quarantine network.

- Depending on the results of the evaluation, the level of distancing will be applied in the three stages: “social distancing”, “enhanced social distancing” and “distancing in daily life” and the level will be adjusted by periodically assessing the risk.

- Plus, depending on the situation regarding the national prevention and infection control, social distancing and distancing in daily life may be repeatedly eased or strengthened.

< Distancing adjustment level >



social distancing

Prohibited in principle, compulsory measures

(Goal) Curb outbreaks to a level that the medical system can handle

(Public facilities)

Operation suspended

(Private facilities)Recommend suspending operations, some businesses restricted


Social distancing

Limited allowance

(Goal) Maintain a decreasing trend of newly

confirmed patients

(Public facilities)

Partial operation

(Private facilities)Recommend refraining from operating, some businesses restricted


Social distancing

in daily life

Allowed in principle, compliance with guidelines, exceptional restriction

(Goal) Control new infections to manageable levels within the quarantine network


Personal and group hygiene (compliance with prevention and control rules)

○ In addition, the government announced it will start to review the issue of adjusting the crisis level which currently remains at a serious level by closely analyzing the follow-up effects such as outbreak trends after the holidays from late April to early May.

□ “Distancing in daily life” refers to a new long-term and sustainable quarantine system that thoroughly continues infection prevention activities while maintaining daily life, economic and social activities.

○ Under the distancing in daily life scheme, daily activities such as gathering, meeting, going out are allowed in principle under the conditions that basic distancing and quarantine measures are carried out.

- However, administrative orders such as orders to comply with quarantine guidelines for high-risk facilities can also be made at the discretion of local governments in consideration of regional characteristics.

○ In addition, public facilities that have been suspended from operation will gradually reopen on the condition that they prepare for quarantine rules by taking the risks of each facility into account.

- Outdoor dispersed facilities such as national parks, outdoor living sports facilities, and indoor dispersed facilities such as art galleries, museums will be opened first as soon as they are ready, and later densely populated outdoor facilities such as sports viewing facilities, and densely populated indoor facilities such as national and public theaters, performance halls, welfare centers will be resumed.

○ The Central Disaster and Safety Countermeasure Headquarters plans to gradually implement measures such as the resumption of operation of public facilities and administrative orders by end of May in order to minimize the confusion caused by the transition to the new level of distancing scheme.

□ Meanwhile, the Central Disaster and Safety Countermeasure Headquarters set today the final version of “Guidelines for distancing in daily life”, which provides action guidelines to practice distancing in everyday life.

○ The government has proposed ▲ 5 basic rules and 4 supplementary rules for infection prevention at an individual level, ▲ basic rules for prevention at a group level, and ▲ specific guidelines tailored to each type of the living environment and facilities for maintaining a basic distance in daily life.

- The five basic rules for individual prevention include ▲ taking a rest at home for 3~4 days if you feel sick, ▲ keeping a distance of two arms-length from others, ▲ washing your hands for 30 seconds and covering your mouth with sleeve when coughing, ▲ ventilating more than twice a day and disinfecting surroundings regularly, and ▲ staying together in the mind while keeping the physical distance.

- The four supplementary rules for prevention at an individual level suggested are ▲ wearing masks, ▲ disinfecting surroundings, ▲ living rules for the elderly aged 65 or over and high-risk groups and ▲ healthy living habits.

○ Park Neunghoo, the Vice Head 1 of the Central Disaster and Safety Countermeasure Headquarters (Minister of Health and Welfare) said that although each rule for individuals seems to be very simple, they are the most effective measures to prevent COVID-19 selected by the quarantine authorities through several expert meetings.

- He requested that every citizen should be well aware of the rules and make efforts to practice them in daily life.

< Outline of Guidelines for Distancing in Daily Life >

Basic Rules

Supplementary Rules


at individual


Take a rest at home for 34 days if you feel sick

Keep a distance of two arms-length from others

Wash your hands for 30 seconds and cover your mouth with sleeve when coughing

Ventilate more than twice a day and disinfect surroundings regularly

Be together in the mind while keeping the physical distance

Wear masks

Disinfect surroundings

Living rules for the elderly over 65 and high-risk groups

Healthy living habits



group level

Community working together

Designate a quarantine manager in the community

Establish and comply with community quarantine guidelines

The quarantine manager should actively play a role

Actively cooperate with the quarantine manager


Harmonization of daily life and

Learning and participation,

Creative utilization

(Composition) a total of 12 ministries, 31 sub-rules

- Places of business, public transportation, restaurants, department stores, etc.

○ Meanwhile, as basic rules for group prevention, actions were proposed to prevent group infection, such as ▲ designating a quarantine manager in the public and private communities, and ▲ contacting to a public health center if multiple people in the group show symptoms.

< Supplementary guidelines for group quarantine (detailed guidelines by ministries)>

Large Category





Business (4)

When working

Office (workplace), meeting, window for civil services, post office

Daily life (9)

When moving

Public transportation

When eating

Restaurants, cafes (study cafes)

When studying

Private academies·reading rooms, etc.

When shopping

Large distribution facilities (department stores, mart, etc.), traditional markets, small and medium-sized supermarkets

Special days

Family events such as weddings, funerals

Religious life

Religious facilities

Leisure (18)

When travelling

Hotelsresort condominiums, amusement parks, camping grounds, zoos, national parks

Leisure, etc.

Outdoor activities, public toilets, hairdressing·beauty care businesses, bathing facilities, libraries, performance halls, movie theaters, art galleries and museums, baseball and football fields, singing rooms, indoor sports facilities, internet cafes, entertainment facilities

- The 31 detailed guidelines prepared by 12 ministries, which are categorized by facility and situation, are based on the principles of ❶harmonization of daily life and infection prevention, ❷learning and participation, and ❸creative utilization, and consist of large categories such as business and daily life, medium categories such as traveling, eating, leisure and small categories such as offices and restaurants.

- These guidelines will be continuously amended, added and supplemented based on the status of quarantine and on-site feedback from the filed.

□ Park Neunghoo (Minister of Health and Welfare), Vice Head 1 of the Central Disaster and Safety Countermeasure Headquarters said, “As COVID-19 is expected to be prolonged, distancing in daily life becomes a new normal to seek a balance between continuing prevention while blocking the spread of new infectious diseases and living everyday life while engaging in social and economic activities.”

○ He also said “the transition to distancing in daily life does not mean either easing quarantine measures or ending social distancing, and requested to keep working for distancing in daily life, keeping in mind that we will return to enhanced social distancing at any time if situation worsens.”

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