Vietnam's epicenter to combat Covid-19 with mass rapid testing

By Le Nga   May 25, 2021 | 10:34 pm PT
Vietnam's epicenter to combat Covid-19 with mass rapid testing
A medic takes samples of a worker at Quang Chau Industrial Park in Viet Yen District, Bac Giang Province, for coronavirus tests, May 2021. Photo by VnExpress/Giang Huy.
Leading the national infection tally, Bac Giang Province will from Wednesday apply the Rapid Antigen Test (RAT) to ramp up its Covid-19 detection capacity.

The RAT will be carried out among 18,723 residents of Viet Yen District, currently hit hardest by Covid-19.

This testing method detects the presence of viral proteins (antigens) expressed by the Covid-19 virus in a sample from the respiratory tract of a person. The test result normally returns in 15 minutes with an accuracy rate of 70-75 percent.

The move is applied to isolate the possibly infected as soon as possible given Bac Giang has recorded 1,481 cases of Covid-19 since the new wave broke out a month ago, half of the national tally of 2,913. A majority of cases in Bac Giang are workers at four industrial parks, including three in Viet Yen.

As planned, the test will be carried out once every three days by around 400 medics visiting individual households.

All those testing positive must be isolated from the community as quickly as possible.

"This is part of the process to remedy the hotspot. Centralized quarantine is essential, though it would take perseverance," said Tran Nhu Duong, deputy head of the National Institute of Hygiene and Epidemiology, a member of the Covid-19 task force in Bac Giang.

Le O Pich, provincial deputy chairman, said only when the clusters in Viet Yen are put under control could Bac Giang beat the pandemic.

On Tuesday alone, the province recorded 375 new Covid-19 cases, the highest count in a day by a locality ever as Vietnam reported an all-time high daily count of 444.

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