[WORD_ON_THE_WEB] 'I'm worried we'll have to line up to buy kits like we did masks'
The government is considering imposing a price cap on Covid-19 self-test kits as supply falls short of demand for the kits, causing their market price to soar.
Kits have been flying off the shelves due to a spike in new infections. The system, if implemented, will let the kits be sold at costs below the market price.
Prime minister Kim Boo-kyum spoke in a Central Disaster and Safety Countermeasures Headquarters meeting last week that the government aims to secure a steady supply of the rapid-antigen self-diagnosis kits, and is considering imposing a price cap.
From Sunday, the government has also banned online sales of kits and limited which offline sales to pharmacies and convenience stores.
Some Koreans, however say that the government measures come too late, creating chaos and further limiting access to the much-needed tests.
“You should think before you act. All this chaos after something’s already gone wrong.”
“How many doctors can you call after death? They should’ve considered this way earlier. It’s being discussed now, after all this turmoil?”
“I’m worried we’ll have to line up to buy kits like we did masks. Experts are speculating there could be as many as 100,000 daily cases.”
“The government should’ve taken preventive measures to secure production before advising citizens to self-test. Kits are already being sold online for a few thousand won each.”
“If you have symptoms, it’s better to purchase the kit online rather than going out to buy one. But if it can’t be bought online we have no choice but to go out. Wouldn’t it be better to just strictly monitor the prices instead?”
“It’s hard to get them from pharmacies right now, they’re all sold out. It’s easier to buy online. What am I supposed to do if they’re taken down all of a sudden?”
BY LEE SI-YEOUNG, YOO JI-WOO [email@example.com]