The Latest: S Korea reports biggest daily death toll so far

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People wearing face masks walk near a banner displaying precautions against the coronavirus in downtown Seoul, South Korea, Monday, Dec. 28, 2020. (AP Photo/Lee Jin-man)

SEOUL, South Korea — South Korea says 40 more coronavirus patients have died in the past 24 hours, the highest daily number since the pandemic began.

Officials also reported 1,046 new confirmed coronavirus infections Tuesday, taking the total caseload to 58,725, with 859 deaths.

South Korea's previous daily high for COVID-19 deaths was 24, reported on both Dec. 21 and Dec. 22.

Some observers say surging fatalities reflect an increase in cluster infections at nursing homes and long-term care centers where elderly people with underlying health problems stay.

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