2,599 Fully Vaccinated People Contract COVID-19 In South Korea

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More than 2,500 people in South Korea have been diagnosed with COVID-19 despite being fully vaccinated against the virus, health authorities announced Tuesday.

At least 2,599 fully vaccinated individuals in South Korea tested positive for COVID-19 as of Aug. 18, the Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency (KCDA) was cited as saying by China’s state-run news platform Xinhua Net.

The figures are up from the 2,011 breakthrough infections reported last week. However, the breakthrough cases only represent 0.03% of more than 7.4 million people in the country who are fully vaccinated against the virus.

Among the total number of breakthrough cases, officials said 26 were caused by the Alpha variant, one case was of Beta, one was gamma and nearly 500 were caused by the highly contagious Delta variant. 

Health authorities for KCDA on Tuesday also confirmed 2,899 new cases of four major variants of the coronavirus. Of the new cases, 2,874 were caused by the Delta variant.

South Korean health authorities have now reported a total of 13,454 Delta cases, which is behind a recent spike in COVID-19 infections in Seoul and neighboring areas, according to the Korea Herald.

The new confirmed COVID-19 infections came after South Korea’s health ministry Sunday announced that it would receive 7.01 million doses of the Moderna vaccine by September as part of an effort to inoculate more than 70% of its total population by the end of next month. 

"In response to our request to speed up and expand the vaccine supply, Moderna informed us that it will supply 7.01 million doses by the first week of September," the health ministry said in a statement, as reported by Yahoo Finance.

At least 1.01 million doses arrived Monday, with another 6 million to be supplied in the coming weeks. 

In the statement, the health ministry also revealed that it is currently negotiating a vaccine swap with the Romanian government. It is unclear what COVID-19 vaccine and how many doses of the jabs will be included in the swap, but the ministry said it will release more information about the deal as soon as it is finalized.