Frontline doctor urges everyone to comply with COVID-19 regulations

As communities around the world grapple with the COVID-19 pandemic, doctors and nurses have been on the front lines, working around the clock to help treat patients and contain the spread of the virus.

Frontline doctor urges everyone to comply with COVID-19 regulations
Doctor Nguyen Trung Cap, head of the Emergency Department at the National Hospital for Tropical Diseases.

Doctor Nguyen Trung Cap, head of the Emergency Department at the National Hospital for Tropical Diseases, where more than 100 COVID-19 patients have been treated, talks about how he and his colleagues are fighting the virus.

Can you give us an update on the health of patients being treated at the hospital?

As of April 15, we have isolated and conducted screening of 2,110 suspected cases. There were 142 positive patients being treated, of which 81 have recovered and been discharged.

Among the patients we treated, we also had 14 patients in very severe conditions, including five patients on ventilators and one of them on ECMO (Extracorporeal membrane oxygenation). But fortunately, among serious patients, many patients have improved. Eight patients are recovering, three out of five cases on ventilators have been weaned from the machine, and the two others who are still on ventilators have passed the critical phase.

What has Vietnam's biggest success in COVID-19 prevention and control been?

I think that the greatest success in this battle is that we remarkably controlled the spread of the epidemic into Vietnam. Although we are very close to China and trade activities between the two countries are abundant, we have been able to prevent the epidemic from making a huge outbreak in Vietnam. That’s what helped the health sector avoid being overloaded and society has had time to prepare for what might come next.

We were affected by the pandemic rather early compared to other parts like Europe or the US, while our health care system, to be honest, lacks many things compared to those developed countries. But it was fortunate that we quickly became aware of the risks and conducted aggressive steps to control the pandemic.

The result is that we have timely restrained the disease’s spread in term of speed and scale. Up to this point in time, we have not been overloaded and we have not had to experience a total collapse of the treatment system like in many other countries.

There are reported shortages of personal protective equipment in many countries. What’s the current situation at the National Hospital for Tropical Diseases?

We have made quite proper preparation and now the number of patients with COVID-19 at the hospital is about 100, so there is no shortage of personal protective equipment like in some parts of the world.

However, plans can be prepared and facilities can be only sufficient to meet a certain scale of a pandemic. If we implement good community-based disease control, limit the number of patients, the hospital will be able to cope with the situation. But if the epidemic prevention in the community is not good, which can lead to a high increase in the number of patients, exceeding the capacity of hospitals, at such a point, we will lack everything.

During the course of treatment, what difficulties did the doctors encounter?

Our biggest difficulty when facing this disease is that it is a new disease and our understanding of it is limited. For the first patients, we had to set up a treatment regimen based on our experience and existing knowledge, as well as knowledge from other similar or related diseases such as SARS, influenza and a few studies by foreign colleagues.

But after treating a few patients, we gained certain knowledge and experience. In addition, many studies of colleagues around the world have started to produce brighter pictures of COVID-19 pathology. This has improved the treatment regimen and made it more consistent with the understanding of this pathology and reality in patients.

 

The second difficulty is that COVID-19 is a highly contagious disease. Therefore, ensuring safety for health workers is also extremely difficult. And sadly, two doctors at the hospital were infected when treating patients.

However, after a period of time, we have improved our skills to prevent on-the-job infections, as well as improved the use of protective equipment, so that there have been no more on-the-job infections.

What do you think of the support the Government and the people have given to the health sector?

Since the beginning of the epidemic, we have received much attention and support from everyone in society, both physically and mentally. The Government has provided us with good working conditions and colleagues have been supporting us in term of professional knowledge sharing.

Individuals and organisations have also been very generous in donating protective equipment and sending us presents and their encouragement. That has given us more strength to continue this battle.

Can you tell us a bit more about preparations for different scenarios of pandemic development, given the fact that we have seen community transmission?

So far we have taken steps to prepare for worse situations such as more than 1,000 or 10,000 patients. But the capacity and resources of our health system are limited, so it would be difficult to respond to situations with hundreds of thousands of patients like in Italy or the US. Therefore, we hope that every citizen will continue to strictly follow the guidelines on social distancing so that the disease does not break out beyond the ability of the health sector.

And even though our health system is ready, everyone should take care of their own health and safety, think of the community and work together to control the disease together with the health sector.

The fight against epidemics is not only the job of the health sector. The Government has been working on scenarios and proper instructions and preparations. We also have a mechanism for inter-sector co-operation in pandemic prevention and control. Many companies have started to work on manufacturing ventilators and protective equipment.

The Ministry of Health has also sketched out plans for worse situations. Hospitals have prepared equipment, machines, medicines, protective materials and also training for doctors at all levels.

What is your biggest hope now?

I really wish everyone would raise their awareness about community health and we need every single person to comply with the Government's anti-pandemic regulations and the Ministry of Health’s practices for infection prevention. If every one of us can do that properly, we’ll be able to contain COVID-19 more effectively and return to normality soon enough. — VNS

Police doctors on frontline in COVID-19 fight

Police doctors on frontline in COVID-19 fight

Police Hospital 199 under the Ministry of Public Security is one of four hospitals in the central city of Da Nang receiving and monitoring patients suspected of being infected by the COVID-19 virus. 

Frontline doctors in Covid-19 combat

Frontline doctors in Covid-19 combat

National Hospital of Tropical Diseases No. 2 in Dong Anh district in Hanoi is home to the largest number of COVID-19 patients.

 
 

Other News

.
Convenience stores become ideal heat shelters for Hanoi young people
Convenience stores become ideal heat shelters for Hanoi young people
SOCIETYicon  21/05/2020 

Convenience stores in Hanoi have become ideal heat shelters for many young people amid the blazing hot weather.

Private nursery schools face teacher shortage
Private nursery schools face teacher shortage
SOCIETYicon  21/05/2020 

Many private nursery schools in HCM City and neighbouring provinces are facing teacher shortage after three-month school closure.

Over 1,000 experts coming to Quang Ngai to be quarantined
Over 1,000 experts coming to Quang Ngai to be quarantined
SOCIETYicon  21/05/2020 

The central city of Quang Ngai will receive and quarantine over 1,000 foreign specialists coming to work at the Dung Quat Economic Zone and Hoa Phat Steel Company.

Heavy rains forecasted to hit northern, central regions
Heavy rains forecasted to hit northern, central regions
SOCIETYicon  21/05/2020 

The northern and northern central regions of Vietnam would face downpours from this evening, May 21, following scorching hot days.

Vietnam to continue testing Covid-19 vaccine on mice
Vietnam to continue testing Covid-19 vaccine on mice
SOCIETYicon  21/05/2020 

Company for Vaccine and Biological Production 1 (VABIOTECH) under the Ministry of Health will conduct a second test of Covid-19 vaccine on mice next month.

Doctors to transfer British pilot to Cho Ray Hospital before lung transplant
Doctors to transfer British pilot to Cho Ray Hospital before lung transplant
SOCIETYicon  21/05/2020 

The country's 91st COVID-19 patient, a British pilot, will be transferred to the intensive care centre in HCM City’s Cho Ray Hospital to have a lung transplant when the patient is healthy enough for the procedure.

HCMC Hospitals report increase in heat-related illnesses
HCMC Hospitals report increase in heat-related illnesses
SOCIETYicon  21/05/2020 

HCM City and other localities in the south have recorded temperatures of 38-39 degrees Celsius in recent days, leading to more heat-related illnesses, especially among children and the elderly.

12 suspects involved in BIDV violations to be prosecuted
12 suspects involved in BIDV violations to be prosecuted
SOCIETYicon  21/05/2020 

The Supreme People’s Court has decided to prosecute 12 people involved in banking operation violations at the Bank for Investment and Development of Vietnam (BIDV).

Latest Coronavirus News in Vietnam & Southeast Asia May 21
Latest Coronavirus News in Vietnam & Southeast Asia May 21
SOCIETYicon  21/05/2020 

Eight wide-body aircraft transport Vietnamese medical supplies to US

Legal proceedings launched against deadly wall collapse case in Dong Nai
Legal proceedings launched against deadly wall collapse case in Dong Nai
SOCIETYicon  21/05/2020 

The police of the southern province of Dong Nai on May 20 decided to start legal proceedings against the deadly wall collapse case at the Giang Dien Industrial Park.

Court upholds sentences for defendants in fake medicine case
Court upholds sentences for defendants in fake medicine case
SOCIETYicon  21/05/2020 

The High-level People’s Court in Ho Chi Minh City on May 20 upheld the verdict handed down at the first-instance trial in a case involving the “manufacturing and trading of counterfeit medicine”.

Time to let motorbike’s little lights shine?
Time to let motorbike’s little lights shine?
SOCIETYicon  21/05/2020 

A new draft law by the Ministry of Transport is aiming to shed some light on Vietnam's traffic problem.

Learning pressure is the biggest concern for children: survey
Learning pressure is the biggest concern for children: survey
SOCIETYicon  21/05/2020 

A recent survey has found that learning pressure is the biggest challenge children face while staying at home due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Da Nang authorities asks for changes to building facades
Da Nang authorities asks for changes to building facades
SOCIETYicon  21/05/2020 

The People’s Committee of Da Nang has asked the two investors behind high-rise projects to change the glass used on the façade of the buildings by the end of this month.

Lychee farmers enjoy early harvest
Lychee farmers enjoy early harvest
PHOTOSicon  20/05/2020 

In the recent years, local farmers in Thanh Ha district, Hai Duong province have expanded areas growing early ripen lychees with better yield.

Charming white lotus flowers spotted in bloom on outskirts of Hanoi
Charming white lotus flowers spotted in bloom on outskirts of Hanoi
PHOTOSicon  20/05/2020 

With pristine white lotus flowers starting to enter full bloom in a thousand-square-metre pond located in Tam Hung commune of Hanoi’s outlying Thanh Oai district, 

Streets around Hanoi enjoy sight of blossoming lotus flowers
Streets around Hanoi enjoy sight of blossoming lotus flowers
PHOTOSicon  21/05/2020 

With beautiful lotuses serving to brighten up streets throughout Hanoi, many of the blossoming flowers can be seen being carried by street vendors in bicycles as they sell them at the start of summer, the traditional lotus flower season.

Mekong Delta healthcare system growing rapidly, eases pressure on HCM City hospitals
Mekong Delta healthcare system growing rapidly, eases pressure on HCM City hospitals
SOCIETYicon  21/05/2020 

The healthcare system in the Mekong Delta has been steadily expanding and becoming increasingly sophisticated, and the large number of choices available now is helping reduce overcrowding at HCM City hospitals.

Bayer Vietnam CEO fined for disseminating nine-dash line map
Bayer Vietnam CEO fined for disseminating nine-dash line map
MARITIME SOVEREIGNTYicon  20/05/2020 

The CEO admitted that she sent an attached file having the illegal nine-dash line.

Snapshots of trams reminisce about old Hanoi
Snapshots of trams reminisce about old Hanoi
PHOTOSicon  20/05/2020 

The trams have been an inseparable part of the city’s landscape for more than two thirds of a century.

 
 
 
Leave your comment on an article

OR QUICK LOGIN