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[Ministry of National Defense] Fully vaccinated people can visit soldiers on a conditional basis

The ministry has delivered a notice of eased quarantine rules to all the armed services;

Soldiers returning from leave will not go into quarantine if they test negative and having no symptoms

“Despite the eased quarantine rules, we should continue to follow the basic quarantine rules thoroughly.”

The ministry has delivered a notice of eased quara

The military has been making gradual progress toward ‘back to normal’ through COVID-19 vaccinations. Considering this, the Ministry of National Defense decided to ease quarantine rules for fully vaccinated people, allowing ‘a visit to soldiers on a conditional basis’ about one year and four months after the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, as the vaccination rate among soldiers under 30 years old, who represent the majority of the armed forces, has exceeded 80 percent.



On June 21, the ministry delivered a ‘notice of eased quarantine rules for fully COVID-19 vaccinated people’ to all of the armed services. The eased quarantine rules include the conditional permission of a visit to soldiers, which had been ceased on February 22, 2020.


The ministry announced that those for which it has been two weeks since receiving the Janssen vaccine (1st) and the Pfizer or AstraZeneca vaccine (2nd) will be allowed to visit soldiers. Even though soldiers in the barracks have not been vaccinated, fully vaccinated visitors will be allowed to visit soldiers.


The quarantine rules have also been eased for fully vaccinated soldiers. Until now soldiers returning from leave have gone into quarantine as a preventive measure, but starting now the soldiers will have only a 14-day preventive observation if they test negative on a PCR test and have no symptoms. In case of contact with a confirmed case, if a soldier tests negative on a PCR test, has no symptoms, and does not show conditions associated with virus variants identified in South Africa and Brazil, the soldier will be able to be exempted from the two-week self-quarantine. In taking this measure, however, guidance and judgment from health authorities should be prioritized over the military’s rule.


Beginning next month, the eased quarantine rules will also be applied in the use of religious facilities or sports activities. The fully vaccinated will be free from the obligation to wear a mask in sports facilities outside the military. For religious activities, both the fully vaccinated and the people who have received the first dose of the Pfizer or AstraZeneca vaccine will be exempted from the number-of-attendees limit. It is also permitted for the fully vaccinated to conduct religious activities, such as joining a choir, having a small group gathering and worshipping together. In the area of religious and sports activities, the ministry decided to also apply the eased quarantine rules to people who have received the first dose of the Pfizer or AstraZeneca vaccine.


The fully vaccinated will also be excluded from the number-of-people limit in military-run public places, such as war memorials and national cemeteries, starting from the next month. They are also excluded from the number-of-people limit in the use of a barracks bathroom.


However, the ministry will continue to maintain a thorough quarantine posture to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in the military.


“Regardless of the eased quarantine rules for fully vaccinated people, the basic quarantine rules, such as wearing a mask, washing hands frequently, and making sure to be in well-ventilated and sanitized spaces, should be observed thoroughly. If there is a need for medical treatment and testing related to COVID-19 due to cases showing COVID-19 symptoms, epidemiologic investigation, etc., the people will go into temporary quarantine, just as in the current situation, and the eased rules will be applied after it has been confirmed there is no risk,” the ministry emphasized in a statement.


Meanwhile, the ministry said in a statement that 332,384 soldiers under 30 years old have been vaccinated as of June 21. This amounts to 80.2 percent of the 414,000 soldiers eligible to receive vaccines.

By Su-Yeol, Maeng < >

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