Three Vietnamese citizens returning from China's Wuhan city tested positive for coronavirus (nCoV) as of January 30 afternoon, bringing the total number of nCoV cases detected in the country to five, reported the Ministry of Health.
Doctors of the Cho Ray Hospital wear protective clothing when entering the quarantine area.
One of them has been quarantined at central Thanh Hoa province’s hospital, while the other two are undergoing treatment at the National Hospital for Tropical Diseases in Hanoi.
All three have reportedly gone to China's Wuhan – the epicentre of the sweeping pneumonia virus outbreak.
Along with a Chinese father and son from Wuhan admitted to Ho Chi Minh City’s Cho Ray Hospital, Vietnam has recorded five cases of coronavirus infection so far.
The pair have been identified as Li Ding, 66, and 28-year-old Li Zichao. They were admitted to the Cho Ray Hospital on January 22 suffering from pneumonia and later tested positive for coronavirus.
The Ministry of Health said both patients were recovering. Li Zichao on January 28 was given the all-clear.
The country is quarantining a total of 32 suspected infected cases, awaiting final test results, while 65 cases have their results returned negative. Forty-three people are being quarantined despite having normal health as they have had contacts with suspected nCoV-infected patients.
National steering committee for coronavirus prevention set up
Deputy PM Vu Duc Dam examines the preparedness for quarantining and treating patients infected with coronavirus at the National Hospital of Tropical Diseases
Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc has decided to establish a national steering committee for prevention and control of the acute respiratory disease caused by a new coronavirus (nCoV).
The committee is headed by Deputy Prime Minister Vu Duc Dam, while Deputy Ministers of Health Do Xuan Tuyen and Nguyen Truong Son work as its deputy heads.
The steering committee’s members also include representatives from various ministries and agencies. The Ministry of Health is the standing agency of the steering committee.
It is tasked to help the PM instruct and coordinate relevant ministries, ministry-level and governmental agencies and localities in the fight against the nCoV-caused acute respiratory disease across the country.
The committee is assigned to direct the coordination between ministries, ministry-level and governmental agencies and bodies of the Party, Vietnam Fatherland Front and People’s Committees of centrally-run provinces and cities in mobilising resources to participate in and support the implementation of urgent plans launched by the Ministry of Health.
The steering committee is responsible for carrying out and supervising the performance of the PM’s instructions by ministries, sectors and localities and making daily reports about the development of the disease to the PM and authorities.
The northern port city of Hai Phong also set up a steering committee for prevention and control of the disease.
Vietnam is well controlling nCoV-caused acute respiratory disease: PM
At the meeting of permanent Cabinet members on January 30
Vietnam has set forth specific solutions to cope with the acute respiratory disease caused by the novel coronavirus (nCoV) and is well controlling it, Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc said on January 30.
Speaking at a meeting between permanent Cabinet members and representatives of ministries and agencies in Hanoi, PM Phuc said the virus is rapidly sweeping over the world.
“We must stay calm and resolutely protect the public's health,” he said, urging localities and agencies to outline their own countermeasures.
The PM stressed the need to completely ban travelling via border-to-border trails and suspend the sending of Vietnamese labourers to China from which the deadly virus is originated.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs should soon work with the Chinese side to bring Vietnamese workers in the country home, he said.
Tours to China, and vice versa, must also be banned, he said, adding that trading activities at border gates are not encouraged at this time.
PM Phuc asked the army, public security forces and the health sector to closely supervise passengers going through border gates.
Those from China must be kept under quarantine within 15 days – the estimated incubation period of the new virus. Besides, wildlife trading – the source of transmission - must be completely prohibited, he said.
As Vietnam holds the ASEAN Chairmanship, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs should raise voice to create high consensus in the grouping in the fight against the disease, the PM noted.
Local steering committees for prevention and control of nCoV would help improve the efficiency of the combat, he suggested.
The leader asked the media to consider the fight against nCoV a political task, and the Health Ministry to coordinate with the Ministry of Justice to make legal preparations once the World Health Organisation (WHO) announces the nCoV emergency status.
At the meeting, Deputy Minister of Health Do Xuan Tuyen reported that as of 15:20 on January 30, three people had tested positive for nCoV, raising the total cases in the country to five.
One of the three is being treated at the General Hospital of the central province of Thanh Hoa, while two are under treatment at the National Hospital for Tropical Diseases. All are Vietnamese nationals and returned from China’s Wuhan city where the virus was first identified.
According to the Health Ministry, as of 12:00 the same day, 7,819 cases of nCoV infections had been confirmed in 19 countries and territories worldwide, with the death toll climbing to 170, including 162 in Wuhan.
In response to the PM’s directive, the Health Ministry has asked all provincial hospitals to set up emergency teams and map out countermeasures, while preparing medical equipment and medicines.
The ministry suggested establishing five working groups to inspect the prevention and control of nCoV in localities, focusing on areas at high risk of being affected by the disease.