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Cross infection at centralized quarantine centers possible: HCMC chairman

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HCMC – As the number of Covid-19 cases has been escalating at centralized quarantine facilities and in areas under lockdown in HCMC, municipal chairman Nguyen Thanh Phong said cross infection there was a possibility.

At a meeting on July 15 on the employment of social distancing measures under the prime minister’s Directive 16 in HCMC, Phong said a majority of new Covid-19 cases in the city over the past few days were at quarantine facilities. The city must admit the possibility of cross infection there, news site Vnexpress reported.

Therefore, the number of Covid-19 cases there must be reduced gradually, Phong said.

A survey showed 3%-8% of the cases at quarantine centers and in areas under lockdown were caused by cross infection and others detected after their long incubation periods.

Phong assigned the municipal Department of Information and Communications to analyze new cases to assess the risk and possibility of cross infection at quarantine centers and work out appropriate solutions.

He asked for close control over these centers to prevent cross infection and ordered districts not to set up centralized quarantine centers if they fail to meet safety requirements, such as a lack of toilets and bathrooms.

The municipal chairman also asked the competent agencies to ask residents in areas under lockdown not to go out and strictly comply with anti-pandemic regulations.

In addition, the treatment of Covid-19 patients is extremely important. The city will focus on treating critical patients and minimize the Covid-19 fatalities.

Therefore, the municipal Department of Health must quickly direct the deployment of the Ministry of Health’s instructions to reduce pressure on treatment facilities as well as the treatment time.

The Government has affirmed that the city’s anti-pandemic solutions were right, so the city must be unanimous in making use of the remaining seven days to return to the new normal state, Phong noted.

Secretary of the HCMC Party Committee Nguyen Van Nen said the city had changed its testing strategy, worked out testing results faster, combined quick and PCR tests and brought large pandemic clusters under control.

The city has applied social distancing for seven days and needs to continue to strive to achieve its targets, Nen noted, adding that the municipal steering committee for Covid-19 infection prevention and control needs to prepare response plans as HCMC’s neighboring provinces have also practiced social distancing, so the situation might be more difficult.

Speaking at the meeting, HCMC Vice Chairman Duong Anh Duc said since April 27, the city had recorded more than 22,000 Covid-19 cases, including 142 deaths.

Since July 1, the city has had more than 1,300 cases per day and has prepared more than 39,000 beds at 25 medical centers for Covid-19 treatment.

As for the vaccination, more than 991,900 people have been vaccinated against Covid-19, including nearly 48,300 people having received two shots. The city has a plan to launch the fifth vaccination campaign next week with 930,000 doses of the AstraZeneca, Moderna and Pfizer vaccines.

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