Deputy health minister Nguyễn Trường Sơn on Thursday afternoon inspects the 800,000 doses of AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine being kept at the cold storage of May Cosmetic and Drugs JSC, Cát Lái Industrial Zone. — VNA/VNS Photo Đinh Hằng
HÀ NỘI — With 503 locally acquired COVID-19 infections reported in the past 24 hours, driven by outbreaks in Bắc Giang and HCM City, Thursday saw the highest daily increase in cases in Việt Nam since the beginning of the pandemic earlier last year.
The northern province of Bắc Giang continues to lead the national tally with 327 new cases today, mostly in locked down areas connected to intense outbreaks in industrial zones, bringing the province's patient total to 5,007 since the start of the fourth wave on April 27, 2021.
HCM City had another 137 cases, also the biggest daily increase, as the city entered the 18th day of social distancing that went into effect on May 31, 2021.
With a caseload of 1,197, mostly detected since late May following the discovery of the cluster connected to a Christian mission group, the southern economic zone is currently the third-largest coronavirus hotspot in the country, following Bắc Giang and its neighbouring province Bắc Ninh (which has seen 12 cases within the last 24 hours also connected to known clusters in industrial zones, bringing the number recorded here to 1,454 patients).
The last biggest daily increase was seen on May 25, 2021, with 444 domestically transmitted infections along with three imported cases.
With the complicated development of the outbreaks here, the Government has decided to allocate the majority of the nearly 1 million doses of AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine received from Japan to HCM City.
Deputy health minister Nguyễn Trường Sơn on Thursday afternoon inspected the 800,000 doses of AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine, which were delivered to HCM City earlier in the morning and are currently being kept in the cold storage of May Cosmetic and Drugs JSC, Cát Lái Industrial Zone.
The vaccination drive is expected to start from Saturday and local health authorities have stated that all of the available doses could be administered within a week's time.
In the last 24 hours, the southern province of Tiền Giang has seen 13 new cases, Bình Dương Province seven cases, four new cases in the central province of Hà Tĩnh, two in Lạng Sơn, and one in Nghệ An.
Among the total 515 new cases within 24 hours, 12 were imported cases that have been quarantined upon arrival.
The new cases reported today brought the caseload in the fourth wave to 8,913, while 1,879 have been declared recovered.
Up to 2,311,345 specimens have been collected and processed in this wave of infections.
In total, since the beginning of the pandemic, the national COVID-19 caseload has reached 12,150, with total recoveries at 4,653 and deaths at 61.
A total of 175,480 people in the country, who have either returned from overseas or come into contacts with known COVID-19 patients, are under quarantine. — VNS