40 COVID-19 patients negative for SARS-CoV-2

Sunday, 2020-08-09 10:14:21
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A local resident makes a medical declarations at a PCR sampling venue set up at Nguyen Trai Secondary School in Ba Dinh District, Hanoi, August 8, 2020. (Photo: NDO/Duy Linh)
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NDO – 40 COVID-19 patients have tested negative for SARS-CoV-2, of which 30 have tested negative at least twice, signalling that they will soon recover from the disease.

>>> Vietnam confirms 21 more COVID-19 cases

>>> Hanoi begins RT-PCR testing for 75,000 people returning from Da Nang

According to the latest report from the National Steering Committee for COVID-19 Prevention and Control, Vietnam reported two more COVID-19 cases on Sunday morning (Aug 9), taking the national count to 812.

Of the new patients, one is in Hanoi and the other, in the northern province of Bac Giang. Both are close contacts to previously confirmed COVID-19 patients.

Among the total 812 patients since the first case was detected in January, 317 were imported.

The number of new cases related to the current outbreak in the central coastal city of Da Nang since July 25 is 355.

As many as 395 or 48.6% of the total patients have made a full recovery, and there have been 10 COVID-19 related deaths.

Among the patients undergoing treatment in health facilities across the country, 40 have tested negative for SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, of which 30 have tested negative at least twice.

Currently, 178,695 people who had close contact with COVID-19 patients or who entered Vietnam from pandemic-hit regions are being quarantined nationwide.

* On August 8, Acting Minister of Health Nguyen Thanh Long said that his ministry is supporting Hanoi in providing PCR tests for close contacts of COVID-19 patients in the capital city, as well as returnees from Da Nang and those coming from COVID-19-hit areas.

Long has assigned the nation’s four leading medical units, including Bach Mai Hospital, the National Paediatric Hospital, the National Hospital for Tropical Diseases and the National Institute of Hygiene and Epidemiology, to conduct PCR testing on more than 70,000 Hanoians in the above-mentioned groups.

Long emphasised the Ministry of Health’s determination to keep the capital city safe against the spread of the pandemic, saying the centrally-run hospitals would provide the maximum level of support to Hanoi and that the ministry would soon appoint experts to assist the city.

He also urged Hanoi to properly prepare all facilities and equipment, adding that local hospitals should carry out tests on suspected case during medical examination, as well as provide COVID-19 tests for critically ill patients and health workers in places at risk of infection.

The acting health minister on the same day decided to establish five mobile teams to inspect COVID-19 epidemic prevention and control in localities.

* In order to shorten the time and increase the capacity of COVID-19 testing, the Ministry of Health has issued "Temporary Guidance on the pooling of samples for SARS-CoV-2 testing", to be applied in medical facilities nationwide, with an aim of pooling patient samples for testing in order to reduce the need for biologicals, chemicals and consumables used for testing and save time as well as ensure the quality of testing in accordance with the prevailing disease situation.

The guidance enables the epidemiological surveillance and diagnostic testing of COVID-19 in one or more population groups based on the evaluation of the epidemiology and associated risk factors.

* On August 8, Politburo member and Minister of Public Security General To Lam issued a directive urging the public security force to strengthen its COVID-19 fight, while closely coordinating with functional forces in applying necessary and urgent measures to cope with the pandemic’s spread.

* On Saturday afternoon, a 38 member delegation of medical staff from the northern province of Phu Tho arrived in Tam Ky City in Quang Nam to support the central province in its fight against COVID-19. On the occasion, Phu Tho presented Quang Nam with 2,000 pieces of personal protective equipment.

A medical team from Phu Tho arrived in Quang Nam Province on August 8 to support the four local hospitals in their COVID-19 fight. (Photo: NDO/Tan Nguyen)

On the same day, ten doctors and nurses from Binh Dinh Province also arrived to help Quang Nam in its COVID-19 testing at the request of the Ministry of Health.

Binh Dinh on Saturday also sent more experts to Da Nang. Two days earlier, 25 doctors and nurses from the province departed for Da Nang to support the city in its COVID- 19 fight, after receiving the call from Chairman of the Da Nang People's Committee Huynh Duc Tho.

* The GeneXpert method, which detects DNA sequences specific for tuberculosis (TB) with very high specificity and sensitivity in the Vietnamese TB prevention network since 2012, has been licensed by the Ministry of Health as a new method for COVID-19 confirmatory detection.

According to Associate Professor, Dr. Nguyen Viet Nhung, Director of National Lung Hospital, the test is also rRT-PCR but it is better as the system operates completely automatically and results are available within 35-45 minutes.

It is expected that on August 15, the National Lung Hospital will import 16,000 tests from Sweden to use for the GeneXpert system. After that, the hospital will give priority to hot spots such as Da Nang, Quang Nam, Thanh Hoa, Dak Lak, Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City to carry out COVID-19 tests. Other localities will also be trained to perform this test.

Currently, Vietnam has about 200 GeneXpert testing machines, with 28 laboratories meeting the biosafety standards required by the manufacturers.