Binh Thuan medics moved to tears after patient tests Covid-19 negative

By Viet Quoc   April 7, 2020 | 12:00 am PT
Binh Thuan General Hospital doctors and nurses cried tears of joy after the province's last Covid-19 patient tested negative Monday.

Doctors and nurses of the Binh Thuan General Hospital celebrate upon receiving news that "Patient 36" has tested negative for the virus, April 6, 2020. Video courtesy of the Binh Thuan General Hospital's Infectious Disease Department.

"Patient 36," a 64-year-old woman, is the last of nine patients treated at the hospital. Her samples tested Covid-19 negative for the first time Monday morning, said hospital director Nguyen Van Thanh. Seven of the nine patients were discharged on April 3. "Patient 44," a 12-year-old boy, is yet to be discharged but has also been tested negative earlier.

The woman works as a housekeeper for 51-year-old Dang Thi Lynh Trang, or "Patient 34," a Vietnamese businesswoman identified as a super-spreader of the Covid-19 virus as she has led to at least 10 infection cases, eight in Binh Thuan and two in HCMC who are either Trang's family members or acquaintances. Trang was among the seven discharged on April 3.

"If everything goes well, the two last patients could be discharged by the end of the week," said Thanh.

Upon receiving news that "Patient 36" tested negative, doctors and nurses couldn't contain their excitement and joy, according to a medical staff at the hospital.

Duong Thi Loi, head of the hospital's Infectious Disease Department, said: "We were so happy. We jumped, hugged each other and cried in joy. We didn't even have time to wear masks."

Ever since Binh Thuan recorded its first Covid-19 case, that of Trang, on March 10, a team of 17 doctors and nurses have had to stay in the hospital to treat all incoming Covid-19 patients without going home. Some of them have young children, who’ve had to be tended to by spouses and other relatives. One nurse couldn't even leave the hospital to tend to her mother's funeral, Loi said.

Despite the difficulties, they never faltered, Loi said. "Seeing how the patients put their trust in us doctors and nurses, we had to do our best so they could recover soon," he added.

Vietnam has recorded 245 Covid-19 cases so far, 103 of whom have recovered.

The Covid-19 pandemic has claimed more than 74,700 lives globally.

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