Covid cases on the rise in HCMC

By Le Phuong   August 29, 2022 | 05:00 am PT
Covid cases on the rise in HCMC
Doctors treat a severe Covid-19 patient in HCMC, September 2021. Photo by VnExpress/Quynh Tran
With more people contracting Covid-19 and the number of severe cases rising again, a Ho Chi Minh City health official has warned of another wave.

According to official numbers, 164 people contracted Covid-19 each day in HCMC in the past week compared to 127 the previous week.

In the week to Aug. 28, HCMC recorded more than 1,100 new cases, up 258 against the previous week, Nguyen Van Vinh Chau, deputy director of the municipal Health Department, said Sunday.

The real number of cases, however, could be higher because many have tested and treated themselves at home without visiting any healthcare facilities, and these infections were not added to the official database.

Along with the rise in daily infections, the number of severe cases admitted to hospitals has also increased, with an average 64 cases per day so far this month compared to around 30 in July.

Currently, the city has a total of more than 250 severe Covid-19 patients and around 80% of them must rely on ventilators. Most are in the high-risk group of elderly people, those with chronic diseases and those that have yet to be fully vaccinated with two doses.

In the past few weeks, the Omicron subvariant BA.5 has become the dominant strain of the new coronavirus in the city.

"This variant has been confirmed to spread faster than others, leading to a possibility of a new wave of Covid-19 in HCMC," Chau said.

HCMC, which was hit hard by Covid between May and October last year, has planned to reactivate one of its field hospitals should more severe cases be recorded in future.

World Health Organization Chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said on Aug. 27 the world had reached "a tragic milestone" by recording a million Covid-19 deaths so far in the year.

He again urged all governments to step up action to vaccinate all health workers, older persons, and others at highest risk, as part of efforts towards inoculating 70% of the global population.

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