All quarantined in HCMC test negative for novel coronavirus

By Le Phuong, Duc Hung, Giang Chinh   February 11, 2020 | 04:35 pm PT
All quarantined in HCMC test negative for novel coronavirus
Doctors at HCMC's field hospital for nCoV suspected cases in Cu Chi District, February 10, 2020. Photo by VnExpress/Quynh Tran.
All 29 people quarantined in HCMC have tested negative for the novel coronavirus and no new case detected as of Tuesday night.

The municipal health department, however, said that the city still has 39 individuals that had come into contact with nCoV-infected patients but are yet to show any symptom of the infection.

These individuals are being monitored at home until the end of the 14-day incubation period determined for the virus.

Among the quarantined residents was a five-month-old baby who developed a fever last Sunday after coming into contact with an nCoV-infected Vietnamese American visitor who had transited in Wuhan for two hours en route to HCMC, according to the HCMC Center for Disease Control.

Wuhan City in China’s Hubei Province is the epicenter of the novel coronavirus outbreak that has claimed more than a thousand lives.

The five-month-old baby is among those who have tested negative for the virus and its health is stable.

HCMC has reported three infection cases of the virus, including a Chinese man from Wuhan and his son, the latter declared healthy and discharged from hospital last week.

Under guidelines established by the Health Ministry, a person is suspected of carrying the nCoV infection if he/she develops fever or symptoms of respiratory infection within 14 days of coming into contact with a confirmed patient or people returning from areas with nCoV outbreaks.

Despite being free of suspected nCoV infection cases for now, HCMC will continue monitoring and managing people entering the city and the country. It will also inspect implementation of quarantine facilities in the community.

In the central province of Ha Tinh, Chinese backpacker Zhou Jie, 25, who had tested negative for nCoV, was discharged Tuesday morning from the provincial general hospital.

Zhou had previously entered Vietnam through Mong Cai Border Gate in the northern Quang Ninh Province on January 30, and was on a bike trip to HCMC when he was required to be quarantined after staying at a hotel in Ha Tinh.

The province had reported 14 persons with suspected nCoV infection as of Tuesday, all of whom have tested negative for the virus. 12 have been discharged, while the remaining two are still being monitored at the Ky Anh Town General Hospital and no longer placed in quarantine.

In the northern port city of Hai Phong, 28 people with suspected nCoV infections, including two foreigners, have tested negative for the virus. Hai Phong is one of the localities in Vietnam where a large number of Chinese nationals live and work.

The city's authorities have quarantined 311 Chinese workers since last Friday, and another 120 Chinese workers were put under 14-day quarantine at the second facility of Viet Tiep Hospital upon returning to Vietnam Monday.

Vietnam officially declared the nCoV outbreak an epidemic on February 1, and the country had confirmed 15 cases of infection as of Tuesday. Six of the patients have recovered and been discharged.

As of Wednesday morning, the global nCoV death toll had climbed to 1,115 and confirmed infections topped 45,000, of whom over 4,500 have recovered.

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