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New COVID-19 cases below 90,000 for 3rd day

People wait to take coronavirus tests at a screening clinic in Seoul's Mapo Ward on Friday. (Yonhap)
People wait to take coronavirus tests at a screening clinic in Seoul's Mapo Ward on Friday. (Yonhap)
South Korea's new COVID-19 cases stayed below 90,000 for the third straight day Saturday but were steeply up from a week ago, amid a spike in omicron subvariant infections.

The country added 82,002 new COVID-19 infections, including 397 from overseas, bringing the total caseload to 19,702,461, the Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency (KDCA) said. 

Saturday's tally is slightly down from the previous day's 85,320, but it marks a 19.6 percent increase from a week earlier. 

Daily infection cases have bounced back as the country is grappling with another wave of the COVID-19 pandemic, triggered by the highly contagious omicron subvariant BA.5. 

The pace of transmissions is quickening during the summer, largely due to increased mobility and outdoor activities amid eased virus curbs. 

The KDCA reported 35 deaths from COVID-19, the same as the previous day, raising the death toll to 25,027. 

The number of critically ill patients came to 242, up eight from the previous day. 

Despite the virus resurgence, health authorities said they are not considering tightening antivirus restrictions, such as social distancing and business hour curfews, and that the post-pandemic efforts toward regaining normalcy will continue. (Yonhap)

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