North Korea’s daily fever cases remained below 200,000 for a second consecutive day, state media said on Monday, as Pyongyang remained silent on South Korean and American offers to help fight its first outbreak. confirmed of COVID-19.
The COVID wave, declared on May 12, has fueled concerns about a lack of vaccines, insufficient medical infrastructure and a potential food crisis in the country of 25 million people.
US President Joe Biden said on Saturday that Washington had offered COVID-19 vaccines to China and North Korea, but “got no response.”
North Korea reported 167,650 new fever patients and one additional death on Monday. More than 2.33 million of the 2.81 million cumulative cases reported since late April had recovered by Sunday evening, the northern state news agency KCNA reported. The official death toll stands at 68.
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While keeping silent on the aid offer, North Korea has boasted of a “favorable turn” in the country’s virus situation.
“Crisis awareness and responsibility are further heightened in every region, sector, workplace and position across the country to maintain the favorable course of epidemic prevention work and all outbreaks of the epidemic are controlled by the strict execution of regional and unitary lockdown and blockade. measures,” the KCNA said.
Such COVID-19 restrictions could play a role in North Korea’s lack of response, a senior U.S. administration official said on Sunday.
Seemingly starved of testing supplies, North Korea has not confirmed the total number of people who have tested positive for the coronavirus. Instead, health authorities are reporting the number of fever symptoms, making it difficult to gauge the magnitude of the COVID wave, experts said.
Authorities have been distributing food and medicine across the country, with military doctors deployed to help distribute medicine and conduct examinations.
KCNA said pharmaceutical factories are “accelerating production,” but did not specify which drugs were being produced.
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