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Vietnam faces new Covid-19 outbreaks from new variants

Vietnam's two largest cities of Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh are facing new outbreaks of the Covid-19 pandemic following the detection of Omicron subvariant BA.5 and the slow pace of vaccination.

According to Deputy Director of the Hanoi Department of Health Vu Cao Cuong, the city has recorded three infections caused by the BA.5 sub-strain of the Omicron coronavirus variant.

"The capital city reported 1,538 cases between June 28 and July 4, up 36.5 percent as compared with the previous week," he said.

The official explained that the rise was due to people’s negligence, along with limitations in the communication work.

As of July 3, 99.9 percent of the local population aged over 18 years old had at least one shot of Covid-19 vaccines, 96.5 percent had received a third dose, and 15.6 percent had been given a fourth dose.

For children aged from 5 to 12, only 20.07 percent have been administered with the first dose, Director of the municipal Department of Health Tran Thi Nhi Ha said, noting that the inoculation for children needed the consensus of their families as well as the drastic engagement of agencies and the public.

Addressing a meeting on July 6, Deputy Secretary of the city Party Committee Nguyen Van Phong stressed the need to intensify the pandemic combat with the highest sense of responsibility, and speed up vaccination.

Speaking at a Thursday meeting, director of Ho Chi Minh City Health Department, Tang Chi Thuong, also expressed concerns over the new Covid-19 outbreak in the area following the recent detection of Omicron BA.4, BA.5 subvariants.

"The number of daily Covid-19 infections has slightly increased over the past three weeks," Thuong said. "We are reporting over 50 infections every day in the last three weeks compared to 30 cases in previous weeks."

Since June, the city has tightened control over the new sub-variants of Covid-19 in 22 districts and Thu Duc City. The Pasteur Institute will carry out gene sequencing to detect new sub-variant carriers.

Thuong called on local people to quickly take their booster Covid-19 vaccine jabs to prevent a new outbreak of the pandemic.

According to the Ministry of Health, a total of 913 new Covid-19 cases were reported in Vietnam on July 6, bringing the national tally to over 10.75 million.

The country has so far administered over 234 million doses of Covid-19 vaccines.

Source: VNS/Dtinews

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