Hanoi Covid-19 outbreak 'unpredictable': experts

By Thuy An, Thuy Quynh, Chi Le   July 12, 2021 | 11:31 pm PT
Hanoi Covid-19 outbreak 'unpredictable': experts
A medic takes samples of a local man at his home in Hanoi, July 11, 2021. Photo by VnExpress/Giang Huy.
The source of infections in Hanoi could stem from existing hotspots across the country, silently spreading in the community, experts have warned.

While the pandemic situation in Vietnam’s capital remains under control, in the coming time, more community infections should be expected, said Tran Dac Phu, a senior advisor at the Public Health Emergency Operations Center.

"It is possible many Covid-19 cases with mild or even no symptoms have already infiltrated the community. Cross-infection among workers in industrial parks and their dormitories are very likely to happen, from which the virus could spread," he told VnExpress.

Phu said Hanoi should continue carrying out mass tests, especially in high-risk areas like markets, hospitals and industrial zones to early detect and isolate infection sources and have an overall assessment of the situation.

During a meeting Monday, Deputy Director of Hanoi’s Health Department Vu Cao Cuong concurred, saying the unpredictable situation leaves Hanoi at great risk.

Cuong added new and complicated clusters are forming in the city, especially at Bac Thang Long Industrial Park in Dong Anh District.

He confirmed Hanoi has recorded many returnees from Covid-19 areas, especially Ho Chi Minh City, currently the national epicenter, and that these could infect the community.

More than 16,000 Covid-19 community cases have been recorded in HCMC so far in the new wave that started in Vietnam during late April.

Hanoi’s tally now stands at 535.

The capital is preparing for 3,000-5,000 cases while testing everyone returning from Covid-19 hit localities. Seven-day home isolation is mandatory for arrivals from other localities, while those stemming from HCMC are required to isolate at home for 14 days.

Starting Tuesday, the city closed down indoor restaurants, cafes and barbershops, while suspending physical exercises, entertainment activities and other large gatherings at parks, gardens and public locations.

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