South Korea offers help in pandemic response

A family wearing face masks walk along the Han river in Seoul

COVID-19: South Korea says Trump asked for spare medical equipment to be sent to the U.S.

South Korea's new virus cases appeared to be on a downhill Tuesday, but imported infections marked the biggest one-day increase as the nation enforced quarantines on arrivals from Europe and other regions.

Jeong Eun-kyeong, director of South Korea's Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, told reporters on Wednesday the country is willing to send chemical reagents used to extract genetic material during COVID-19 tests, but at a level that doesn't affect its own testing capacity.

On March 13, South Korea posted more recoveries than new infections for the first time since its first case was confirmed on Jan 20. Jeong also said South Korea has received requests from around 10 countries for kits and other support but declined to identify the countries. South Korea has tested 348,582 people since January 20, when the virus was first detected on South Korean soil.

She didn't provide a detailed estimate on the size of supplies that could be shipped to the United States.

"President Trump reiterated his commitment to employ the full weight of the United States Government and work with global leaders to save lives and restore economic growth", the White House said in a readout of the call.

Moon also talked by phone with the prime minister of Spain. South Korea has 9,137 confirmed infections with just 126 deaths, and has brought the number of new infections per day to 100 or less for the past 14 straight days.

The United States did little testing initially and has now been shutting parts of the country en masse, with fast-growing outbreaks in a number of states and thousands of new cases per day. Visitors from Europe, China, Italy and Iran are required to sign up to a smartphone application to track whether they have any symptoms such as fever.

Latest News