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Pohang city orders mandatory virus testing for each household

1st administrative order in South Korea to require at least one virus testing per household

Pohang city mayor Lee Kang-deok speaks during press conference on Monday. (Yonhap)
Pohang city mayor Lee Kang-deok speaks during press conference on Monday. (Yonhap)
Pohang city has ordered its residents to have at least one person get tested for the coronavirus from each household.

“Although the spread of COVID-19 is on the decrease across the country, the city of Pohang is seeing an increase in the number of local community transmissions including infections stemming from the Sangju evangelical church facility and sauna-related cases,” said Pohang Mayor Lee Kang-deok in a press conference Monday.

“We are issuing an administrative order of a mandatory virus testing for at least one person per each household,” Mayor Lee said.

Once the mandatory testing for each household takes effect from Tuesday, Pohang will become the first local government in the country to issue the strict administrative order.

With approximately 180,000 households subject to the virus testing in the city, the actual number of people who actually get tested for COVID-19 may go over 200,000 as more than one person from each household could get tested.

There have been 276 confirmed cases of coronavirus in the southeastern port city in North Gyeongsang Province since December.

Pohang city has also required restaurant and cafe owners, merchants at traditional street markets, and workers at saunas and hair shops to get tested for the virus before Sunday.

Anyone who does not follow the administrative orders and refuses to get tested can face a fine of 100,000 won ($90), according to the city.

“Issuing the administrative orders is an inevitable measure to overcome the crisis, so we ask citizens’ full cooperation,” Mayor Lee said.

By Kan Hyeong-woo (hwkan@heraldcorp.com)
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