USFK advises quarantine for GIsU.S. Forces Korea (USFK) said Sunday it has instituted a 14-day self-quarantine for U.S. service personnel who visited China recently as the new coronavirus continues to spread.
The quarantine measures, effective as of Sunday, are for U.S. service members returning from China to Korea on or after Jan. 19, “out of an abundance of caution to mitigate risk to the USFK population,” the military said.
The implementation applies only to U.S. soldiers who reside on or off USFK installations, and the 14-day quarantine, which is considered the incubation period for the virus, begins from the date an individual returns to Korea regardless if they display symptoms or not, according to the USFK.
The imposition is in line with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ announcement of a U.S. public health emergency related to the pneumonia-like illness, as well as the Korean military’s actions of isolating recent returnees from China, it added.
“USFK does not have any personnel who have returned from Wuhan or Hubei province, the epicenter of the novel coronavirus outbreak since Jan. 19,” the military said in a release.
As of noon on Sunday, Korea had reported 15 confirmed cases of the deadly virus.
No suspected or confirmed cases have been reported among Korean and U.S. soldiers, according to officials.