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number of new corona19 confirmed patients decreased slightly from yesterday (18th) to 380,000, but the number of patients with severe symptoms has been around 1,000 for over ten days.

The number of critically ill beds has virtually reached its limit, and the fact that the number of deaths has not decreased is also a big problem.

Reporter Jeong Da-eun reports.


Corona intensive care unit at the National Medical Center.

On one side, quarantined patients and on the other side, patients released from quarantine are being treated.

Except for the 10 or so vacant beds in case of an emergency, the intensive care beds that can be used normally are full.

[Jeon Jae-hyeon / Head of Infection Control Team, National Medical Center: If you consider the beds that can be operated, you can think that they are 100% full now.

The medical staff to treat are almost exhausted now, and the bed is highly efficient but almost full…


Although the utilization rate of intensive care beds nationwide is 65.9%, in reality, it has reached the level of saturation.

In Gwangju and Gyeongsangbuk-do, the utilization rate of intensive care beds exceeds 80%, which is even more serious.

The number of critically ill patients reached 1,000 for 12 consecutive days, increasing the burden on the medical system.

The number of confirmed cases is rapidly increasing, and the rapid rise in the number of deaths is also a big problem.

On the 17th, the cumulative number of confirmed cases surpassed 9 million in just two days after exceeding 8 million, and the daily death toll was 319, an increase of 18 from the previous day, the second highest in history.

As the number of confirmed cases skyrocketed, quarantine authorities are reviewing approval for emergency use of MSD's Lagebrio, also known as Molnupiravir.

This is to provide an additional option for patients who are unable to use the currently used Pfizer Paxrovid.

The quarantine authorities expect the peak of the number of confirmed cases to break after next Wednesday, but the number of patients with severe cases is expected to continue to increase for two to three weeks after the peak.

(Video coverage: Hwang In-seok, video editing: Lee So-young)