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Family quarantined after man sells drinks, cigarettes to COVID-19 patient in Vietnam

Friday, May 22, 2020, 11:38 GMT+7
Family quarantined after man sells drinks, cigarettes to COVID-19 patient in Vietnam
The Bac Lieu General Hospital in the namesake Vietnamese province. Photo: N.Han / Tuoi Tre

An entire family in Vietnam’s Mekong Delta have been sent to a quarantine camp after the father was found to have sold drinks and cigarettes to a novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) patient at a local hospital.

T.K.V., 32, his wife, and their nine-year-old daughter are currently staying at an isolation facility in Bac Lieu Province, the provincial steering committee for COVID-19 prevention and control confirmed on Thursday.

V., who earns a living as a hawker at the Bac Lieu General Hospital, sold a glass of tea to a COVID-19 patient at the facility around 5:30 pm on May 16, the committee said.

The patient then asked V. to help him buy a pack of cigarettes. After V. purchased the product and gave it to the patient, he continued asking V. to buy him four other packs of cigarettes.

V. decided to have his daughter buy and deliver the cigarettes to the hospital this time.

According to authorities, both V. and the patient were wearing masks throughout the entirety of their interaction.

V. later returned home and was in close contact with his wife and daughter.

On the morning of May 19, V. and his wife went to a local diner alongside 10 other customers. 

He also met a man named H. for drinks later that same day.

H. had contact with five of his own family members after the meeting.  

V., his family, and H. were brought to a quarantine camp and tested for COVID-19. 

Their results came back negative on Thursday, said Bui Quoc Nam, director of the Bac Lieu Department of Health.

Authorities have been tracking people who had contact with V. and H.’s families.

They will have their health monitored and undergo home quarantine in accordance with regulations.

Police units have been mobilized to safeguard the quarantine area of Bac Lieu General Hospital to prevent similar incidents.

Vietnam has announced 324 COVID-19 patients so far, with 266 having recovered.

No fatality in association with the disease has been reported in the country to date.

No new infections in the community have been documented in the Southeast Asian country in the past 36 days.

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