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New coronavirus strain responsible for new Covid-19 cases in Da Nang

17:03 | 27/07/2020

Genetic analysis from the newly-infected patients in Da Nang reveals there is a novel, more contagious strain of the virus imported from foreign countries to Vietnam. 

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new coronavirus strain responsible for new covid 19 cases in da nang

Deputy Prime Minister Vu Duc Dam, Chairman of the National Committee for Covid-19 Prevention and Control presides over a meeting on COVID-19 July 27. (Photo: VGP) 

The strain is more contagious than the five previously detected strains in the country. Its virulence level is, however, has yet to be confirmed, acting Minister of Health Nguyen Thanh Long was quoted by VNE in a statement at a meeting with the National Steering Committee on COVID-19 Fight and Prevention Monday morning.

Vietnam has previously detected 5 different strains of nCoV circulating in locally-transmitted COVID-19 patients. The new strain marks the 6th one in Vietnam.

“This new strain is imported from outside of Vietnam, but it yet to be confirmed which country it came from”, the acting Minister said, adding that the Health Ministry is submitted the new strain’s data to a world gene bank for comparison.

Central Da Nang City has confirmed three COVID-19 community transmissions over the weekend. Another community transmission was recorded in the nearby Quang Ngai Province. The new batch of infections ends the 99 days of no community transmission in Vietnam.

All the four new cases had either been at or in contact with someone in Da Nang Hospital, Da Nang Hospital C, and the Orthopedic and Physical Rehabilitation Hospital of Da Nang. All three hospitals are located in Hai Chau District and have since been put under lockdown.

new coronavirus strain responsible for new covid 19 cases in da nang
The four new infections end the 99 days of no community transmission in Vietnam (Photo: VNE) 

To prevent the spread of the disease, experts suggested all people who return home from Da Nang and are linked to the aforesaid hospitals must be quarantined for 14 days while health declaration must be mandatory for the others, VGP reported.

Best medical experts have been sent to help the central city to contain the outbreak and find out infection sources as soon as possible.

Residents are encouraged to stay at home. Festivals, religious ceremonies, sports and other events that gather a large number of people are banned. "Non-essential" businesses including entertainment facilities, beauty salons, massage and karaoke parlors, and bars are closed.

Vietnam has so far recorded 420 Covid-19 cases so far, with 55 remaining active.

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Jasmine Le