Vietnam records biggest daily spike in Covid cases as localities to extend lockdown

By Le Nga   August 14, 2021 | 04:07 am PT
Vietnam records biggest daily spike in Covid cases as localities to extend lockdown
People drive past Lang Cha Ca Roundabout in Tan Binh District, HCMC, August 12, 2021. Photo by VnExpress/Quynh Tran.
Vietnam confirmed 9,710 new Covid-19 cases in 40 localities Saturday, the highest number recorded on a single day to date, as many places prepare to extend or tighten restrictions.

Current epicenter HCMC led the day's tally with 4,231 cases, followed by its neighbors and industrial hubs Binh Duong (2,029), Dong Nai (1,023) and Long An (653), the Health Ministry said.

Of the cases recorded on Saturday, 3,510 were detected in the community while the remaining in quaratine facilities or locked down areas.

The Health Ministry also confirmed another 349 Covid-19 deaths, with 285 in HCMC, 32 in Binh Duong, 10 in Long An, five in Tien Giang, three each in Da Nang and Dong Nai, two in Can Tho and one each in Hanoi, Ben Tre, Binh Thuan, Hau Giang, Khanh Hoa, Kien Giang, Soc Trang, Tra Vinh and Vinh Long. The national Covid death tally is now 5,437, including 35 deaths recorded in previous waves.

HCMC, which has recorded more than 4,300 deaths, has named preventing deaths a main mission in the current Covid fight. The city has set up 312 quick response teams to provide emergency aid to Covid patients who turn severe while being self-monitored at home. HCMC is letting around 10,000 asymptomatic patients without underlying conditions stay home.

The day's number has pushed the tally in the ongoing wave since late April to 261,412.

The number of recoveries since the start of the pandemic increased to 96,985, after 4,247 were announced recovered Saturday.

Vietnam now ranks 80th among 222 countries and territories in terms of infection numbers and 69th in fatalities.

The country has vaccinated over 13 million people with at least one Covid-19 vaccine shot. Over 1.2 million of them have been fully vaccinated.

HCMC, Vietnam's biggest metropolises, plans to extend its strict social distancing measures under Directive 16 until mid-September while Da Nang City will impose a seven-day lockdown order which bans residents from leaving their homes starting Monday.

The Mekong Delta's Ben Tre, Long An, Tien Giang and Tra Vinh provinces and the south central Phu Yen Province have announced to extend social distancing under Directive 16 after the current order ends on Sunday.

Phu Yen will continue applying Directive 16 for another 10 days in many parts, while its Son Hoa, Song Hinh and Dong Xuan districts, and Song Cau Town will relax restrictions with Directive 15.

Directive 16 requires people to stay at home and only go out to buy necessities like food or medicines or to work at factories or businesses allowed to operate. Directive 15 prohibits social events, gatherings of 20 people or more and 10 outside workplaces, schools and hospitals.

Long An, Tien Giang and Tra Vinh will apply Directive 16 restrictions until at least the end of August while Ben Tre will keep the restrictions in place for another week, except for Mo Cay Nam and Thanh Phu districts, which will adhere to Directive 15 rules.

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