S.Korean companies offer employees COVID-19 vaccines at work

SEOUL, June 29 (Reuters) - South Korea’s large manufacturing employers have received permission from the country’s health authorities to administer COVID-19 vaccines at in-house clinics, hoping to speed up inoculation of their employees.

The inoculation plans come amid the South Korean government’s push to ramp up vaccinations after a slow start. South Korea has inoculated 15.3 million people, or about 30% of its population, with at least one dose since it began administering vaccines in February.

Affiliates of the country’s biggest conglomerate Samsung Group, including Samsung Electronics Co Ltd, Samsung Display and Samsung SDI Co Ltd, plan to offer vaccine doses to employees at work next month, the companies said on Tuesday.

Samsung affiliates plan to offer Moderna Inc COVID-19 vaccines for its office and production workers, as well as workers from suppliers in South Korea who sign up for doses.

Other large companies registered to provide doses include chipmaker SK Hynix Inc and panel maker LG Display Co Ltd, according to the companies. Under the plans only companies’ own staff and stationed workers from suppliers are eligible for the vaccinations.

South Korea reported 595 new infections in the 24 hours up to midnight on Monday, bringing its tally to 156,167 cases, the Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency said, with a death toll of 2,017.

Reporting by Heekyong Yang; Editing by Kenneth Maxwell