Containers are set up at Seoul Medical Center on Sunday, to house beds for COVID-19 patients. (Yonhap)
The health ministry said Sunday it plans to secure a total of 10,000 hospital beds in the capital area to treat a surging number of COVID-19 patients.
With 10,000 beds, the region comprising Seoul, Incheon and Gyeonggi Province can cope with 1,000 new cases a day for the next 20 days if 500 people are released from quarantine each day, the ministry said.
Of the 10,000 patients, 300 were assumed to be critically ill, 2,700 moderately ill or high-risk, and 7,000 asymptomatic or mildly ill.
Accordingly, the ministry plans to secure 300 beds for the critically ill, 2,700 beds at hospitals specializing in infectious diseases and 7,000 beds at treatment centers.
With the current number of available beds at each type of facility, the ministry said it needs to secure 287 more beds for the critically ill, 2,260 more beds for the moderately ill and 4,905 more beds for asymptomatic patients.
Beds at government-run hospitals will be reserved first while the ministry requests the cooperation of private health care facilities.
Seoul reported 399 new COVID-19 cases on Sunday, followed by Gyeonggi Province with 331 and Incheon with 62.
South Korea's daily caseload broke the 1,000-mark for the first time the same day. (Yonhap)