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USFK COVID-19 Information

By USFK Public Affairs | Aug. 7, 2020

USFK COVID-19 Hotspot Tracker
 

Due to the spread of COVID-19 numerous countries are currently imposing a mandatory quarantine or have otherwise restricted travel from South Korea.
Click here for the list: Travel Restriction List

*** USFK Novel Coronavirus Hotline at BDAACH: 050-3337-2556 (mobile); 737-2556 (DSN); Available Monday-Friday from 6 a.m.-6 p.m. and Saturday-Sunday from 8 a.m.-6 p.m. 
Phones will be monitored after hours by one representative. If you are experiencing symptoms, please contact your nearest emergency room.***

*** Call Tricare's 24/7 language interpretation service at 080-429-0880, select option 1 and ask for an interpreter if you need help navigating Korean Hospitals.*** 

USFK Update:

September 24, 2020

As USFK has adjusted its current health protection condition from “Charlie” to “Bravo” for Areas I, III, IV and the Yongsan and Seongnam districts within Area II. All districts within Area II -- other than the Yongsan and Seongnam districts --will remain in HPCON Charlie.

USFK defines Area II as the greater Seoul metropolitan area with the exact boundary viewable on USFK's COVID-19 hotspot map.

Area II map

September 24, 2020

USFK's Bravo graphics effective Thursday, September 24, 2020:

한국어는 여기를 클릭하세요.

For more information on this release, click here.

September 21, 2020

On September 21, 2020, USFK announced implementing a slight change to the discharge policy for confirmed cases--based on recent medical research studies-- and will begin to release individuals from isolation once they have reached 21 days in isolation, regardless if they continue to test positive for COVID-19.

These studies have indicated that individuals are no longer contagious after 20 days even though their COVID-19 test can remain positive beyond this time.

Even with our change, USFK policies still exceed both U.S. and ROK release criteria, and we remain stringent in identifying, containing and preventing the spread of COVID-19 within our formations, installations, and communities.

For more information on this release, click here.

August 21, 2020

On Monday, Aug. 17, USFK elevated its Health Protection Condition to "Charlie" peninsula-wide due to the increased rise in recent numbers of confirmed COVID-19 cases within South Korea.

This move was an aggressive proactive and preventive elevation to protect our force. Unfortunately, because of this designation, all of our installations and garrisons - for all military services and component commands - have now moved into a red status requiring an exception to policy to depart or arrive at USFK.

We continuously monitor and assess the conditions within South Korea, and as the threat lowers, we will adjust our HPCON level as well.

Please contact your current or gaining unit to inquire further on how to obtain an ETP letter.

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Check out the new official USFK HPCON-C guidelines below and let's continue to stay vigilant so that we can protect ourselves and others:

 

August 18, 2020

Gyeonggi Province

In addition to USFK's directive that mandates a mask for all USFK-affiliated individuals for off-installation wear, Gyeonggi Province - which includes Areas I and III - has made mask wear mandatory by executive order. Anyone caught not wearing mask can be issued an on-the-spot administrative fine not to exceed 100,000 KRW or a fine not to exceed 3 million KRW if ordered to pay by a court of law.

August 17, 2020

Out of an abundance of caution based on the recent spike of confirmed COVID-19 cases across South Korea, United States Forces Korea has raised its current health protection condition to “Charlie” peninsula-wide effective today, August 17 at 5 a.m.

To minimize the potential exposure to others, only mission essential individuals will report for duty with all others conducting telework.

Off-installation travel is only authorized for official and necessary duties. Any other travel requires an exception to policy letter signed by an O-6 officer or equivalent civilian supervisor within the individual or sponsor’s chain of command.

All USFK-affiliated individuals must wear a mask when off-installation to adhere to the core tenets to protect yourself, your bubble and others.

Seated dining at off-installation restaurants, groups larger than 15, amusement parks, festivals, theaters and all bars, clubs and establishments that restrict entrance to adults only are off limits pen-wide to all USFK-affiliated personnel.

August 15 ,2020

Based on the recent increase of confirmed COVID-19 cases in the greater Seoul metropolitan area, out of an abundance of caution, USFK has raised its current health protection condition from "Bravo" to "Charlie" for Area II (+) to include Incheon (except the airport), Gimpo, Goyang, Paju, Uijeongbu, Namyangju, Gwangju, Yongin, and Suwon effective today, Saturday, Aug. 15 at 6 p.m. until further notice.

Travel to and within Area II (+) is limited to residents of Area II (+) or those conducting official and necessary duties only for all USFK-affiliated personnel until further notice. All other travel requires an exception to policy letter signed by an O-6 officer or equivalent civilian supervisor within the individual or sponsor's chain of command.

Individuals residing within Area II (+) are authorized to leave that area for approved activities within HPCON Bravo areas.

August 10, 2020

Effective immediately, due to the rapid increase of COVID-19 cases in Kennedy Complex, Namdaemun Market is OFF LIMITS to USFK, UNC and CFC personnel unless otherwise directed by O-6 level authority.

This will remain in effect until further notice. USFK will continue to assess the situation.

**Namdaemun Market is OFF LIMITS to USFK, UNC and CFC personnel**

 

August 7, 2020

Based on the continued low numbers of confirmed COVID-19 cases within South Korea, and in particular the greater Seoul metropolitan area, USFK has adjusted its current health protection condition to “Bravo” peninsula-wide effective Monday, Aug. 10, at 4 p.m.

Due to continued associated risk, all bars, clubs and establishments that restrict entrance to adults only remain off limits pen-wide to all USFK-affiliated personnel until further notice.

The USFK community must remain disciplined, vigilant and adhere to the core health protection tenets that have enabled it to achieve its current level of success.

As USFK continues to monitor and assess the conditions within the peninsula, it will immediately snap back to a heightened HPCON posture without hesitation if a resurgence of the threat appears within our formations, installations or communities.

 

COVID-19 Survey:

Let your voice be heard! USFK's sixth survey is now available. We request you complete the survey by Friday, August 14th to help inform local policy, DoDEA school decisions, new arrival information, and future communication engagements regarding COVID-19.

Your answers are anonymous and confidential. Thank you!

Survey link: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/USFKconfidence6

August 6, 2020

Based on the continued low numbers of COVID-19 cases within Gwangju City and its five districts, General Abrams has designated the area is no longer off limits to USFK, CFC, and UNC personnel effective Friday, Aug. 7, at 6 a.m. This adjustment is consistent with Gwangju's current government guidance.

Please keep in mind, the threat of COVID-19 remains. The USFK community must remain vigilant and continue to follow our core tenets both on and off post: protect yourself with strict hygiene; protect your bubble by maintaining social distancing and wearing a mask when separation cannot be achieved, and avoid large crowds and handshakes; and protect others by staying home when you are sick. We all must do our part. Remain vigilant to safeguard the communities where we work and live.

July 28, 2020

1.) Please click here for the USFK Commander's Leave Guidance. Consistent with the Department of Defense Travel restrictions, the following measures are in effect until further notice for USFK.

2.)  All USFK associated personnel (Service Members, Family Members, Civilian Employees, Contractors, and Retirees) wanting to quarantine at a location other than a dedicated quarantine facility must have a "Quarantine Action Plan" signed by an O-6 or civilian equivalent from their Korea based military unit or civilian organization. Retirees are authorized to sign for themselves and their family members. Arriving personnel, which reside in the immediate area, after providing a sample for their first COVID test will be released to their unit/organization’s representative provided they have a signed "Quarantine Action Plan". Installations are authorized to hold arriving personnel that do not reside in the immediate area until after the results of the first COVID test are returned. See Attachment 35 for "Quarantine Action Plan" example format. Visitors without one of the following documents: CAC, A-3 Visa/Immigration Card, SOFA verification Stamp, will follow ROK government procedures on arrival.
 
 

June 29, 2020

USFK's Bravo graphics for Yongsan district effective Monday, June 29 at 12 p.m.:

June 27, 2020

Based on the continued low numbers of confirmed COVID-19 cases within Yongsan district, USFK has adjusted the current health protection condition for Yongsan district from “Charlie” to “Bravo” for residents of Area II (+) only, effective Monday, June 29 at 12 p.m. while all other districts within Area II (+) remain in HPCON Charlie for the time being.

USFK has updated its definition of Area II (+) within the greater Seoul metropolitan area to match existing district boundaries; the exact Area II (+) including restricted and unrestricted regions is viewable on USFK’s interact hotspot map located at www.usfk.mil.

Authorized activities in Yongsan district include seated dining at restaurants, hotels, barbershops and hair salons, child care facilities, gyms, outdoor activities and all other authorized HPCON Bravo activities while maintaining social awareness and wearing a mask when 1-2 meters separation cannot be achieved.

This adjustment of authorized activities is consistent with current Republic of Korea government guidance within the greater Seoul metropolitan area.

Only personnel currently residing within Area II (+) are authorized travel to Yongsan district for the above mentioned activities, and can continue to leave that area for approved activities within all other HPCON Bravo areas.

Travel to Area II (+), with the exception of official and necessary duties, remains off-limits to all USFK-affiliated personnel who do not reside within Area II (+) until further notice.

While USFK is adjusting its health protection condition in Yongsan district, it is not lowering its guard. Due to continued associated risk, all bars, clubs and establishments that restrict entrance to adults only remain off limits pen-wide to all USFK-affiliated personnel until further notice.

The USFK Bravo for Yongsan District Memo:

 

May 20, 2020

Quarantine Information for inbound personnel:

Components, units and sponsors ensure inbound personnel conducting quarantine on Camp Humphreys receive 2ID quarantine guide.

Comprehensive quarantine guidance for all inbounds conducting quarantine on Camp Humphreys can be found here.

7th Air Force personnel PCSing to Korea will quarantine at either Osan Air Base or Kunsan Air base. Details on Osan’s quarantine process can be found here.

 

May 19, 2020

USFK's Bravo graphics effective Wednesday, May 20 at 6 a.m. :

HPCON B Graphic - The New Normal to protect yourself, protect your bubble, and protect others will be followed at all HPCON levels.

 

Click here to go to USFK's Bravo Q&A on Facebook

 

May 18, 2020

USFK Lowers Health Protection Condition to Bravo

Based on South Korea’s current COVID-19 conditions remaining favorable to their newly implemented social distancing and preventive measures, USFK decided to lower its current health protection condition from “Charlie” to “Bravo” effective Wednesday, May 20 at 6 a.m. for all areas except Area II (+) which will remain in HPCON Charlie for the time being.
 
USFK defines Area II (+) as the greater Seoul metropolitan area including the immediate region southward to just above Suwon; the exact boundary is viewable on USFK’s interact hotspot map located at www.usfk.mil.
 
Authorized HPCON Bravo activities includes seated dining at restaurants, shopping and outdoor activities while maintaining social awareness and wearing a mask when 1-2 meters separation cannot be achieved.
 

USFK Press Release: USFK Lowers Health Protection Condition to Bravo

 

May 1, 2020

Let your voice be heard! USFK's fourth survey is now available. We request you complete the survey by Monday, May 4th to inform local policy and future communications engagements regarding COVID-19.
 
Your answers are anonymous and confidential. Thank you!
 

Click here to take the survey.

 

April 24, 2020

The USFK Commander has renewed the current Public Health Emergency for an additional 30 days effective today. It will remain in effect through May 23, unless it is renewed or terminated before then.

USFK declared the initial PHE on March 25, and it expired at midnight on April 23.

The decision to renew the PHE does not change USFK’s current health protection condition, preventive mitigation measures being taken, or indicate an increased risk level on USFK installations.

The USFK community has successfully followed control measures put in place to protect the force. This is evident in the less than 1% infection rate among our population of 58,000, however the risk of COVID-19 remains.

Despite USFK’s low infection rate, a select few individuals chose to not follow or adhere to the strict control measures. To date, the USFK commander has ordered seven non-uniformed USFK-affiliated individuals barred from all USFK installations for two years for violating existing preventive control measures during the declared PHE. 

USFK will continually assess necessary preventive measures to protect the force.

USFK remains committed to providing a robust combined defense posture while maintaining a “Fight Tonight” readiness to protect the Republic of Korea against any adversary or threat while implementing and maintaining prudent preventive control measures to protect the force.

The USFK Public Health Emergency Renewal Memo:

USFK Public Health Emergency Renewal Graphic:

 

April 22, 2020

Effective April 20, Secretary Esper approved an extension to the stop move order through June 30 to aid in the further prevention of the spread of COVID-19.
 
All DoD service members and civilians, and their family members will stop all official travel – such as Permanent Change of Station or Temporary Duty.
 
Exceptions may be given for compelling cases where the travel is: (1) determined to be mission essential; (2) necessary for humanitarian reasons; or (3) warranted due to extreme hardship.
 
Please reach out to your chain of command to request an exception to policy.
 
Click here for DoD guidance, helpful information, and an infographic on the update.

 

April 16, 2020

Due to the hard work of the City of Daegu, USAG Daegu, and 19th ESC, the USFK Commander has declared that the Daegu area is no longer a Hot Spot off-limits area, effective 15 April 2020 at 4:00 PM. Current HPCON measures and local restrictions still apply.
 

 

April 10, 2020

Effective today, to the extent practical all individuals on USFK installations will wear cloth face coverings or masks when they cannot maintain six feet of social distance in public areas or work centers.
 
Effective tomorrow - Saturday, April 11 - all individuals on USFK installations will be required to wear a cloth face coverings or mask in the Commissary, PX/BX, Shoppette, Food Court and Post Office during HPCON C and C+; cloth face coverings or masks will be worn at all times outside of residence during HPCON D.
 
Individuals in uniform may use service-issued balaclavas, neck gaiters, or cravats; black or white mask/N95 mask; or, other cloth covering that conforms to the CDC guidelines and is conservative in appearance/color (tan, black, brown, or OD green). Civilians may use any color to meet the requirement.
 
In addition, as a courtesy and sign of solidarity with our host nation communities, all USFK personnel are encouraged to wear cloth face coverings or masks when off installation; the face covering is a visible sign of our commitment to combatting COVID-19 and testament to US-ROK Alliance.
 
USFK has acquired 130K masks and will begin issuing them - two per member of USFK - next week for use.
 
 
 
 

March 26, 2020
 
To our USFK Community, a letter from our command team. The Public Health Emergency was not in response to an increased threat or spread of COVID-19. It was to ensure commanders have the ability to enforce total force compliance to #ProtectTheForce, #StopTheSpread and #KILLtheVirus
 

Click here to read: Letter from USFK Command Team about the Public Health Emergency

Novel Coronavirus Facts:

The 2019 novel coronavirus, or 2019-nCoV, is a new respiratory virus first identified in Wuhan, Hubei Province, China. The novel coronavirus is a new virus and part of a large group of viruses that infect people and while normally causing a mild respiratory disease - such as the common cold - it can potentially be deadly. Signs and symptoms of this coronavirus illness include fever, cold spells, cough, difficulty breathing, chills and muscle pains. Be advised that this is cold and flu season, and the coronavirus shares similar symptoms to both these illnesses.

* Person-to-person spreads mainly via respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes, similar to how influenza and other respiratory pathogens spread.
 
* Symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure
 
* No vaccine or treatment but current mortality rate is low
 
* Recovery for average healthy adult is 7-14 days
 
* Greatest risk is to elderly and young or those who have complicated medical problems
 

Preventive Measure Tips/Guidelines:

* If you are feeling fine and not sick, you can go to work, school, play outdoors, etc. and continue with your daily routines.
 
* However, if you are feeling sick or ill, do not come to work and follow the below guidelines: 
 
                - Seek US medical care/treatment if you are feeling sick, experiencing fever, cough or difficulty breathing; be sure to call
                   ahead to the medical clinic to advise them of recent travels and current symptoms.
 
                - Wear a surgical mask or cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands) when coughing or sneezing.
 
                - Wash hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or use alcohol-based hand sanitizer if soap and
                  water are not available.
 
                - Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
 
                - Perform routine cleaning of all frequently touched surfaces in the workplace - doorknobs, countertops, desks,
                  refrigerators, keyboards,  remote controls, etc. - with disposable wipes; additional disinfection beyond
                  routine cleaning is not needed.
 
                - Avoid nonessential travel to Wuhan and China if possible.  
 
                - Avoid travel or contact with others while sick.  
 
                - Avoid contact with sick people.