Prime Minister Nguyễn Xuân Phúc urged the health care sector to improve testing capacity. —VNA/VNS Photo
HÀ NỘI — Prime Minister Nguyễn Xuân Phúc has ordered the medical sector to create a national-scale health care system in response to a scenario with an increasing number of critically-ill COVID-19 patients.
Chairing the Government’s meeting on COVID-19 Prevention and Control on Friday, he urged the health care sector to improve testing capacity for patients showing light symptoms such as coughing, fever and shortness of breath. At the same time, the sector must focus on protecting the health of people in high-risk groups, especially those with underlying medical conditions and the elderly.
He highlighted the dual target of pandemic prevention and control along with developing socio-economy and ordered local authorities and sectors not to stay complacent and make all-out efforts to curb the community transmission of COVID-19.
“COVID-19 prevention is a long battle. Until there is a vaccine, we have to cohabit with the pandemic,” he said.
He praised localities for their creative response to the second outbreak including the establishment of a health ministry task force working in Đà Nẵng and the mobilisation of hundreds of medical workers for the central region. New technologies have been applied to trace infected persons and people in close contact with them.
Acting Minister of Health Nguyễn Thanh Long said the outbreak in Đà Nẵng City, Quảng Nam and Hải Dương provinces had been controlled. There will be new cases in the community in some localities in the coming days and more fatalities are predicted.
PM Phúc asked local authorities and the Ministry of Education and Training to hold discussions and submit a plan for organising the second period of the national high school exam in areas which had lockdowns lifted. — VNS
Health sector’s COVID-19 testing capacity improves considerably
HÀ NỘI — The testing capacity of the health sector has improved considerably during the latest COVID-19 outbreak, figures from the Ministry of Health (MoH) reveal.
Facing the resurgence of the coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 in central Đà Nẵng City and some localities in late July, the MoH ordered the enhancement of testing capacity across the entire health sector.
In less than a month, from July 23 to August 19, the sector took 390,490 samples, or 47.8 per cent of the total handled since late January, when the disease first appeared in Việt Nam. The figure was 426,718 between late January and July 24.
A little over 3,000 samples were tested from January 22 to March 5, or 70 samples per day on average. The number increased to 182,109 between March 6 and April 22 (3,874 per day) and 237,815 between April 23 and July 22 (2,631 per day). The daily average reached 14,470 between July 23 and 1pm on August 19.
Since July 25, when the new outbreak began in Đà Nẵng, the city has handled the largest number of samples, of about 86,000, followed by Hồ Chí Minh City and central Quảng Nam province.
There are currently 123 facilities capable of conducting RT-PCR tests nationwide, with a maximum capacity of some 46,000 samples a day. They include 71 establishments carrying out confirmatory tests, with a total daily capacity of more than 36,000 samples.
The MoH has set up testing support systems to help localities promote testing capacity when necessary. — VNS