Ninety-four days since the fourth wave began, Vietnamese Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh said new solutions are necessary for the country to continue the fight against COVID-19.
Since April 27, the country has already recorded 1,132 deaths on top of the 35 reported since early 2020; and from the less than 4,000 infections in the whole of 2020, total cases now stand at 137,062.
"We have to take practical approaches to the pandemic to continue to realize the dual goals of pandemic containment and economic development," the PM told an online government meeting with local authorities on COVID-19 prevention and control.
Meanwhile, the National Assembly gave the go signal for the government and the Prime Minister to implement active, flexible and even stronger measures to respond to the threats of the virus. “The government would issue a resolution on urgent measures to prevent and control COVID-19 following the newly-adopted NA resolution,” PM Chính said.
According to the Ministry of Health, the infections in residential areas and locked-down areas in Ho Chi Minh City are very high — which means the virus is being transmitted throughout the community.
“The infection rate in HCMC will reach a plateau and will eventually decrease but the number of cases will still be high,” MoH predicted. Adding that it is necessary for the city to continue to apply strict social distancing rules under Directive 16.
Strengthen the emergency and intensive care capacity
Minister of Health Nguyen Thanh Long has recently issued Decision 3616/QD-BYT which approves an initiative that will strengthen the country’s emergency and intensive care capacity for hospitals treating critically ill COVID-19 patients.
The said project will have 12 national-level intensive care centers for COVID-19 treatment stationed at 12 hospitals in the northern, central and southern regions. Each ICC can accommodate 200 to 3,000 beds.
Bach Mai Hospital in Hanoi will set up a 1,000-bed ICC while six other hospitals including Viet Duc, the National Hospital of Tropical Diseases, the Hanoi Medical University Hospital, Hue Central Hospital, 108 Military Central Hospital, and 103 Military Hospital will set up ICC with 500 beds each.
Moreover, Cho Ray Hospital, the Lung Central Hospital, Can Tho Central General Hospital will set up 200-bed ICC each. Ho Chi Minh Medical University Hospital will establish 500 ICC beds. The resuscitation centers, which are based in HCMC, will have 3,000 beds each.
In addition, the ministry also tasked 33 hospitals to establish regional intensive care centers, each with at least 50 to 100 beds and expand further to 200 or 300 beds depending on how the situation develops.
More than 8,000 new cases were recorded today
Vietnam recorded its second-highest daily COVID-19 increase on Friday, with nearly 300 deaths reported.
The MoH confirmed 8,622 locally transmitted COVID-19 infections along with 27 imported cases in the past 24 hours, pushing the total in the fourth wave to 133,257.
The breakdown of the new cases in the country is as follows: Khánh Hòa (217), Cần Thơ (174), Đồng Tháp (157), Hà Nội (144), Bà Rịa-Vũng Tàu (133), Bến Tre (97); Tây Ninh (88), Đà Nẵng (65), Phú Yên (40), Trà Vinh (36), Hậu Giang (28), Bình Định (17), Kiên Giang (17), Bình Thuận (17), An Giang (16), Vĩnh Long (15), Quảng Nam (13), Bình Phước (12), Ninh Thuận (11), Vĩnh Phúc (9), Đắk Lắk (8 ), Hà Tĩnh (7), Gia Lai (6), Quảng Ngãi (6), Đắk Nông (4), Thái Nguyên (3), Lạng Sơn (2), Hòa Bình (2), Nam Định (1), Lâm Đồng (1), Thanh Hóa (1), Hải Dương (1), and Bắc Ninh (1).
There are 411 patients in intensive care units while 21 COVID-19 patients are in critical condition and on life support.
Vietnam’s fatality count is now at 1,161.