Experts: Vietnam’s Covid-19 might peak in next 2 weeks

Leading medical experts predict Vietnam might reach the peak of the coronavirus pandemic curve in the next two weeks.
May 12, 2021 | 08:39
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Experts: Vietnam’s Covid-19 might peak in next 2 weeks
Disinfection at Dong Anh-based National Hospital for Tropical Diseases (Photo: VNE)

With most of the epicenters discovered and localized, suspected patients under quarantine, Covid situation in Vietnam is expecting to reach its peak in a fortnight before gradually declining, according to Dr. Le Quoc Hung, head of the Tropical Disease Department, Cho Ray hospital.

“To contain the virus, we must be able to control all people having direct contacts with Covid-19 patients,” Hung was quoted by VNE.

Dr. Truong Huu Khanh, from Children Hospital No.1, Ho Cho Minh City, shares the same prediction. Vietnam’s numbers of new infections and epicenters are on the rise. If its ability to contact tracing and localizing is good, according to Khanh, the 4th wave will be contained in late May. On the contrary, the situation might go worse if the anti-pandemic approach is ineffective and people lower their guard.

“Authorities’ strategy and residents’ willingness to follow regulations are key factors in this Covid-19 battle,” the doctor stressed.

Experts: Vietnam’s Covid-19 might peak in next 2 weeks
K Hospital in Tan Trieu, Hanoi is currently under blockade (Photo: VNE)

Vietnam on May 10 recorded 125 community infections, the highest since the pandemic broke out in early 2020. On May 9, 8, and 6, authorities also confirmed recorded numbers, which were 92, 80, and 64 respectively.

Associate Professor, Dr. Nguyen Lan Hieu, Director of Hanoi Medical University, emphasized the seriousness of the outbreak, citing the multiple epicenters, infection sources, virus variants as causes. The numbers of hotspots are frontline hospitals. The National Hospital for Tropical Diseases, for example, has been under lockdown for 8 days following strings of infections detected. The facility which has been at the forefront of the Covid-19 battle in Vietnam, treating some 1,000 Covid-19 patients, no longer admits new patients. The blockade order obviously burdens the country’s healthcare system.

“Medical facilities are the stronghold in the fight against Covid-19. As the virus spreads in the hospitals, the cross-infection among hospitals also grows,” the Associate Professor said. “Overrun healthcare system will take a toll on the treatment of Covid-19 treatment.”

Dr. Hung also commented that the current wave is more dangerous than the three previous ones, given such a high number of one-day new infections, localities affected, and epicenters. However, he was confident that Vietnam will once again win over the pandemic, saying many provinces and cities are drawing on the experiences gained in previous outbreaks.

“Vietnam has been doing a great job in containing the virus until now. If we haven’t, the number of new infections might have increased exponentially for now,” Hung said.

The nation’s tally tops 502 cases as of Tuesday noon.

Experts: Vietnam’s Covid-19 might peak in next 2 weeks
Covid-19 testing at Ho Chi Minh City's Hospital for Tropical Diseases (Photo: VNE)

Vietnam's Deputy Health Minister Do Xuan Tuyen on May 10 also said that Vietnam is handling the pandemic well.

“The new infections reported during the past few days are all F1 cases, which have been put under quarantine and had samples taken for Covid-19 testing, so, the risk of contagion in the community is low. Although localities have quickly contact traced F1 cases, their testing capacity is still limited, leading to the slow announcement of testing results,” Tuyen said, explaining the spike of Covid-19 cases in recent days.

Affirming that the current outbreaks are basically under control, Tuyen called for the continuance of the anti-pandemic principles of “preventing, detecting, quarantining, zoning, controlling and treating.” He added that it was needed to “rapidly detect and localize to restrict the spread of disease to the community.”

The Health Ministry has required localities to enhance their testing capacity including contact tracing, sample taking, as well as ensuring equipment, biological products and human resources, and localizing to the narrowest possible scale to avoid affecting socio-economic development. “It’s also essential to strengthen to screen in high-risk areas to soon discover F0,” he said.

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