A sign placed in front of a house where a COVID patient is quarantined at home in HCM City’s District 3. VNS Photo Bồ Xuân Hiệp
HCM CITY — HCM City has basically contained the local spread of the highly contagious Omicron variant of COVID-19.
Speaking at a press conference on Thursday (January 27), Nguyễn Hồng Tâm, deputy director of the HCM City Centre for Disease Control (HCDC), said 92 cases of Omicron have been found, but all except five are imported cases.
The first three cases found in the community, on January 19, were linked to a Vietnamese woman entering the country on January 10 from the US through Nha Trang.
Two more cases were found later, also involved with this cluster.
All five patients are now in stable condition.
Contact tracing them turned up 185 people who had been in close contact, but all tested negative.
“No further infections related to the cluster have been found,” Tâm said.
Most of the Omicron cases had mild symptoms such as fatigue, fever and chills, he said.
Visitors with mild COVID to quarantine at home
Speaking at the press conference, Nguyễn Thị Huỳnh Mai, chief of the Department of Health office, suggested that people arriving in the city with COVID but with mild symptoms or without any should be isolated at home.
Those entering with severe symptoms will be transferred to a field hospital for treatment, moderate cases will go to Field Hospital No. 12 or a private hospital authorised by the department.
Currently, everyone testing positive on arrival are sent to Field Hospital No. 12 and their samples are tested to see if they have the Omicron variant.
The department also wants the gene sequencing to be done randomly instead of everyone testing positive, according to Mai.
“Gene sequencing all cases is a real challenge.”
Earlier all public and private hospitals in the city that meet the conditions mandated by health authorities were allowed to treat people entering the country infected.
The city is continuing its booster vaccination drive.
There are some 2,300 patients currently in hospitals, 121 at quarantine facilities and 5,166 at home. — VNS