Three people linked to a female patient returning from the U.S. have tested positive for the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in the south-central province of Binh Thuan, bringing Vietnam’s total to 38.
A 51-year-old Vietnamese woman who returned from a U.S. trip in early March was confirmed as Vietnam’s 34th COVID-19 patient on Tuesday.
Her trip included transit time in South Korea and Qatar.
Three people who had close contact with the woman have now tested positive for the novel coronavirus, the Ministry of Health said on Wednesday afternoon.
They include a housekeeper, an employee, and a daughter-in-law of patient No.34.
All of them are female, aged 64, 37 and 28, respectively. The women are now quarantined for treatment at the General Hospital of Binh Thuan.
The newly confirmed cases were among 15 people sampled by the Binh Thuan Center for Disease Control (CDC) for having close contact with the woman returning from the U.S.
Their samples were tested by the Pasteur Institute Nha Trang in the south-central city of Nha Trang, with results coming out positive for the three people.
Patient No.34 left for the U.S. on February 22 and came back to Vietnam on March 2.
She transited Incheon International Airport near Seoul, South Korea, and Hamad International Airport in Doha, Qatar during her respective departure and return flight trips.
Her return flight landed at Tan Son Nhat International Airport in Ho Chi Minh City on the morning of March 2.
The woman was admitted to the provincial general hospital on Tuesday morning and tested positive for the novel coronavirus there.
She is currently quarantined and treated at the Binh Thuan hospital.
The three new patients have brought Vietnam’s total infections to 38, with 16 having fully recovered.
Twenty-two cases have been reported in the country over the past six days, most of which can be traced to ‘patient No.17,’ a Hanoi woman returning from a trip to London, Milan, and Paris.
The novel coronavirus, which first emerged in the central Chinese city of Wuhan in December 2019, has infected over 118,800 people and killed nearly 4,200 globally as of Wednesday afternoon, according to Ministry of Health statistics.