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HCM City develops response plan to care for up to 500 critically-ill COVID-19 patients

The Ho Chi Minh City Department of Health has developed a response plan for a scenario in which the number of COVID-19 patients reaches 10,000 – 15,000, including 500 severe cases.

Illustrative photo. (Source: VNA)

The city plans to add more hospital beds and designate the Thu Duc Hospital for COVID-19 Treatment in Thu Duc as a medical facility providing intensive care for patients in critical conditions.

Some 50 – 100 ICU beds will be added to Cho Ray Hospital, the Hospital for Tropical Diseases in HCM City, and Pham Ngoc Thach, Trung Vuong and Thu Duc Hospitals for COVID-19 treatment.

HCM City’s daily count of new cases has increased to three digits over the last few weeks with the total infections since April 27 exceeding 6,200, making the city the country’s largest COVID-19 hotspot at present. The city is making all-out efforts to significantly reduce the number of local infections by the end of July.

Additionally, three hi-tech solutions were proposed by the municipal Department of Information and Communications on July 6 to help monitor people self-quarantining.

People are queuing for COVID-19 testing. (Photo: VNA)

They include a mobile app called VHD (Vietnam Health Declaration) developed by military-run telecom group Viettel, to be used to keep track of people who entered Vietnam from pandemic-hit regions.

STAYHOME, a home quarantine control device developed by TMS Solutions, will be used to track the location of a person in self-quarantine in real time and monitor the person’s body temperature. If the quarantined leaves his/her residence or has high temperature, the device will automatically send a warning to authorities for an in-time response.

HCMCovidSafe, meanwhile, is a mobile SIM-based device built by Tech4Covid, a group of researchers from the University of Science and the University of Information Technology under the Vietnam National University HCM City (VNU-HCM). It is also designated to keep an eye on quarantined people.

The municipal Department of Information and Communications said it expects the three solutions will help the city monitor how F1 cases observe quarantine rules and promptly send warnings if there are violations.

The solutions are scheduled to be piloted in Districts 7 and 12, Tan Binh, Go Vap and VNU-HCM in the first phase which takes place this month. The pilot project will be extended to all districts in the second phase in August.

The move came as HCM City prepares to pilot a scheme in which people having close contact with COVID-19 patients, or F1 cases, are allowed to undergo home isolation instead of mandatory centralised quarantine.

Source: VNA

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