Covid critical cases and fatalities now HCMC's major problem: Party official

By Le Phuong, Manh Tung   August 3, 2021 | 09:01 pm PT
Covid critical cases and fatalities now HCMC's major problem: Party official
Inside a Covid-19 Intensive Care Unit in HCMC's Thu Duc City, July 2021. Photo by VnExpress/Thanh Nguyen.
HCMC's continuing shortage of facilities and personnel for treating Covid-19 patients can result in high mortality rates, its deputy Party chief has warned.

Phan Van Mai said the city has increased facilities, human resources, equipment, and medicines, and many district hospitals have been commandeered for Covid treatment, but they all are "overloaded."

"Offering treatment to all critical patients and a high rate of fatalities are now problems," he said at a city meeting Tuesday.

The city last month began categorizing patients into five: those who have tested positive just once, asymptomatic, those with mild symptoms, those with underlying medical conditions or comorbidities, and severe cases.

However, with the number of infections increasing sharply, patients are not categorized in time, causing their condition to worsen, sometimes fatally.

Asked by the media at the meeting about the biggest reason for the fatalities, Mai said authorities "are still tracking down data to analyze."

"For now, the city has yet to come up with a full picture of the situation to draw any conclusions."

Counting the number of cases every day does not mean much any longer, and "What is more important is that of those who have been admitted for treatment, how many have recovered, how many are severe and how many have died in order to adopt stronger treatment measures to prevent patients from becoming critical or dying."

The country's Covid epicenter for a month now, HCMC has recorded 105,095 cases so far in the ongoing wave that began in late April.

As of Monday, the city has had 33,474 patients in hospitals, including 1,026 severe cases who need ventilator support and 15 who need ECMO support.

After the first death in June, the city has so far suffered 1,674, including 170 recorded on Sunday, according to the health authorities.

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