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Vietnam announces 17 imported coronavirus cases

Tuesday, September 29, 2020, 22:46 GMT+7
Vietnam announces 17 imported coronavirus cases
Researchers handle test tubes when they work on COVID-19 vaccine studies in Vietnam. Photo: Duyen Phan / Tuoi Tre

Vietnam reported 17 imported COVID-19 infections on Tuesday, all Vietnamese returnees from Russia.

The 17 patients arrived at Can Tho International Airport in the namesake city in southern Vietnam on board the same flight on Saturday last week, the government said in a post on its verified Facebook page, where it regularly gives updates on COVID-19.

They were immediately sent to a centralized quarantine zone in Bac Lieu Province, over 100km south of Can Tho City, upon landing.

The Bac Lieu Center for Disease Control sampled them for COVID-19 testing on Sunday.

Their tests at the Pasteur Institute in Ho Chi Minh City on Monday returned positive.

The Ministry of Health announced eight recoveries on Tuesday, taking the total of recovered patients to 1,007.

Vietnam has confirmed 1,094 coronavirus patients since January 23, when the virus first struck the country.

The country has recorded 35 virus-related deaths so far, most having suffered critical underlying health problems.

A new wave of infections hit the country on July 25, when Da Nang documented the first community transmission after 99 days of zero domestic cases nationwide.

A total of 551 local cases were then logged across Vietnam in the following weeks, the majority linked to Da Nang.

The nation spent over a month tracing contacts and managing to suppress the outbreak.

It has gone more than three weeks without any infection in the community.

Vietnam has resumed commercial flights to certain destinations, including Thailand, South Korea, Japan, Taiwan, and mainland China.

Entrants from these places are now required to present certificates proving they tested negative for the novel coronavirus within three days of their boarding flights.

The Vietnamese government had suspended international commercial flights since March 25 to slow the spread of COVID-19. 

Vietnam began denying entry to foreign nationals on March 22 but the government allows foreign experts, skilled workers, investors, and diplomats to enter the country on a case-by-case basis, subject to mandatory quarantine.

Since then, charter flights to the country have only been arranged to bring in experts, skilled workers, and diplomats, and to repatriate Vietnamese citizens stranded in other nations and territories due to the pandemic.

Vietnam currently charges international arrivals for quarantine. It provided the quarantine service for free in the past.

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