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    Combating COVID-19 with Social Distancing on the Korean Peninsula



    Story by Sgt. Ian Vega-Cerezo 

    2nd Infantry Division/ROK-U.S. Combined Division

    CAMP HUMPHREYS, Republic of Korea- Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, 2nd Infantry Division/ Republic of Korea-U.S. Combined Division Warriors across Camp Humphreys and the Korean Peninsula are giving their all to combat the virus.
    While thorough screenings at the gates and testing for the virus have enabled command teams across the peninsula to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 - the best means of preventing the spread of the virus is practicing good hygiene and adhering to social distancing.
    “We realized that COVID-19 can be spread 24-48 hours before somebody is symptomatic,” said Lt. Col. N.I. Okpokwasili, Division Surgeon, 2ID/RUCD. “That’s why we talked about spreading people apart for six feet and reducing group contact, because it’s really that pre-symptomatic spread that we’re trying to fight with social distancing.”
    In order to assist in the effort, all nonessential employees have been ordered to stay at home and establishments across the garrison such as the Post Exchange and the Commissary, which provide essential services to Soldiers, have taken measures to further reduce the risk of catching the disease.
    “We’ve placed mind-your-meter stickers on the floor to allow customers to see where the proper social distance is and we also enforce the wearing of face-masks to enter the facility,” said Debra F. Melton, the store manager of the Humphreys Main Exchange. “We’re also limiting the customers coming into the store so we don’t exceed the space we have available for shopping. It’s been very effective. Initially, I would say that customers were very reluctant, but it’s our job to enforce it for everyone’s health.”
    Despite the looming threat of the virus, the division’s primary mission of staying ready to fight tonight and win remains a priority.
    “There is a critical balance between fighting Rona and being prepared to fight tonight,” said Okpokwasili. “If Soldiers are careful and smart, then they bring less risk to training events because one weak link in the chain can truly hurt our fight tonight posture.”



    Date Taken: 06.19.2020
    Date Posted: 06.18.2020 21:05
    Story ID: 372422
    Location: CAMP HUMPHREYS, 41, KR

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