Military personnel entering a US Army base in South Korea are reportedly being asked to sniff apple cider vinegar to see if they still have a sense of smell, seen as an early sign of COVID-19 infection.
The vinegar sniff test is taking place at the United States Army Garrison Daegu in the district of Nam in southern South Korea.
According to local media, military personnel are carrying out the test to establish whether they have lost their sense of smell, a common symptom of COVID-19.
The US Army garrison said on social media: “At Gate 4 Camp Walker today, we conducted random smell testing on personnel coming onto the installation using a new method of delivering – cotton swabs that are handed to each individual and immediately disposed of after testing.
“The primary symptom for about 30 percent of patients with mild cases of COVID-19 is a loss of smell known as anosmia, recent studies show, and 66 percent of COVID-19 patients suffer from anosmia.”
According to local media, the vinegar test has been taking place at camps Carroll, Walker and Henry since 3rd April.
It is considered a local initiative and it is unclear whether other military garrisons will adopt the same measure.
Around 30 percent of people who tested positive for COVID-19 in South Korea, where large-scale testing is underway, experienced anosmia as their main symptom in cases that were considered mild, according to The British Association of Otorhinolaryngology.
According to the latest figures from the Johns Hopkins University, South Korea has registered 10,331 cases of COVID-19 and 192 related deaths.
Meanwhile, 6,694 people have made full recoveries.
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