BÌNH THUẬN — Deputy Minister of Health Nguyễn Trường Sơn on Sunday highly appreciated the southern province of Bình Thuận’s efforts to prevent and control COVID-19.
He made the remark while leading a delegation from the health ministry to the province, which is currently trying to track down and check the health status of people who had close contacts with Việt Nam's 34th positive patient, a businesswoman returning from the US and has since then caused 11 infection cases.
Nguyễn Quốc Việt, director of the Bình Thuận Department of Health, said by Saturday, the province had so far nine COVID-19 patients. All of them were quarantined and being treated in stable conditions.
All people who had contact with the patients were under quarantine and the province had prepared equipment and medicine to treat the disease caused by the new strain of coronavirus, he said.
There are four hospitals in the province with the infrastructure to receive and treat COVID-19 patients.
The province asked the health ministry to give offer more professional support and human resources if the situation worsened.
Deputy Minister Sơn asked the province to continue preventive and control work based on regulations.
The province should rotate human resources and equipment from safe areas to support patients.
As of Sunday night, Việt Nam had 57 COVID-19 patients, with the latest four being nationals from Czech, Latvia, Germany and the UK. 16 have been successfully treated and recovered. A total of 41 patients are being treated at different hospitals across the country. 17 of them are foreigners and 24 are Vietnamese.
Most of them are in stable conditions with normal temperature and breathing, but some have mild coughs.
Eight British nationals who had close contacts with an air hostess – later confirmed to be COVID-19 positive – on the flight from London to Việt Nam on March 9 have tested negative for the coronavirus, according to health authorities of Quảng Bình Province, where they are staying.
A 69-year-old male patient from the UK has underlying diseases such as high blood pressure and diabetes. He tested positive for SARS-CoV-2 virus on March 8 and was treated at the Lào Cai Province General Hospital for one day, before being moved to the National Hospital for Tropical Diseases No 2 in Hà Nội’s Đông Anh District.
He still suffered from high temperature on Saturday morning and needed a ventilator.
Phạm Ngọc Thạch, director of the National Hospital for Tropical Diseases, said that elderly COVID-19 patients with chronic diseases such as high blood pressure, diabetes, lung or liver diseases often presented more serious symptoms than younger, healthier patients. They also faced a high risk of respiratory failure due to weak immune resistance.
Trần Quang Thắng, a doctor from the National Geriatrics Hospital, said elderly people made up the highest rate of COVID-19 patients and fatalities in the world, as seen in China and Italia. — VNS