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USFK Adjusts Health Protection Condition in Area IV

PA-001-21 | Feb. 3, 2021

USAG HUMPHREYS, Republic of Korea —

Based on USFK’s assessment of a stable COVID-19 environment, low confirmed cases and incident rates facilitating a reduced threat of the virus within Area IV, USFK has adjusted its current health protection condition from “Charlie” to “Bravo” for Area IV effective Monday, February 8 at 6 a.m.

All other USFK designated areas will remain in HPCON Charlie until further notice.

USFK also consulted and coordinated this adjustment in HPCON posture with the Busan, Daegu, Gunsan and Pohang local governments and received their concurrence to the move.

“Area IV’s record of success - including low confirmed cases, zero on-installation positive cases since April 2020, and their reduction of the threat to the community - have contributed to USFK’s decision to adjust its HPCON level to Bravo in Area IV,” said Gen. Robert B. “Abe” Abrams, USFK Commander. “Additionally, we actively consulted with the city leaders who partner with our installations, and these leaders concurred with our assessment of the current situation and agreed it is a prudent decision to adjust the HPCON level to align with the ROK government’s current social distancing level there.”

HPCON Bravo mitigation measures are consistent and closely aligned with the Republic of Korea’s social distancing level 2.0.

Authorized off-installation activities in HPCON Bravo include seated dining at restaurants of less than four people, domestic travel with overnight stays at hotels including Jeju Island, shopping at indoor malls and outdoor activities while maintaining social awareness and physical distancing.

At this time, travel to Area IV is only authorized for those who reside within Area IV, or for official and necessary duties when approved by the first O-6 or civilian equivalent within the individual or sponsor’s chain of command. Additionally, Area IV residents can only travel to HPCON Charlie areas for official and necessary duties.

While USFK is adjusting its health protection condition in Area IV, it is not lowering its guard. Due to continued associated risk, all bars, clubs, karaoke 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 continue to follow all South Korean rules, directives and laws regarding COVID-19, adhere to USFK core tenets and wear a mask at all times when off installation to protect yourself, your bubble and others.

USFK will continue to closely monitor and assess the COVID-19 environment pen-wide, and will soon make a decision on adjusting Areas I and III to HPCON Bravo within the next week.

“The COVID threat still exists, especially the new variants that have appeared within South Korea,” said Abrams. “We must remain disciplined, vigilant and adhere to the USFK HPCON measures and core tenets that have enabled us to achieve our current level of success.”

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