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Medical officials suspended from work after Vietnamese returnee spread COVID-19

Tuesday, May 04, 2021, 17:18 GMT+7
Medical officials suspended from work after Vietnamese returnee spread COVID-19
Officials are pictured during an inspection at a COVID-19 quarantine facility in Phu Ly City, Ha Nam Province, Vietnam, April 3, 2021. Photo: Ha Nam / Tuoi Tre

Authorities in Ha Nam Province have barred two medical leaders from work for their responsibility in the case of COVID-19 patient No. 2,899, whose failure to comply with home quarantine guidelines led to the new outbreaks in northern Vietnam.

The suspension, signed by director of the Ha Nam health department Nguyen Trong Khai, has been imposed on Nguy Cao Phi, director of Ly Nhan District’s medical center, and Luong Thanh Ngoc, head of Dao Ly Commune’s medical station.

Le Thi Thuy, secretary of the Ha Nam Party Committee, had ordered grassroots authorities to take disciplinary action against organizations and individuals responsible for COVID-19 patient No. 2,899’s spreading the pathogen into the community.

The patient was a Vietnamese returnee from Japan living in Dao Ly Commune in Ly Nhan District.

He completed his quarantine in central Da Nang City on April 21, having tested negative for the novel coronavirus three times.

He left Da Nang on April 21 and came home in Ha Nam on April 22.

Ha Nam authorities failed to monitor the returnee since then, when he should have followed COVID-19 prevention and control regulations more seriously.

Notably, he even invited other people over to his place for a party.

On April 24, he coughed, had a fever and a sore throat, but was not tested immediately for COVID-19.

His test result returned positive in Ha Nam on April 28 and in Hanoi on April 29.

At least 14 people in Ha Nam that can be linked to the patient have tested positive for the coronavirus since then, while another 600 direct contacts have also been tested.

The detection of patient No. 2,899 also marked the resurgence of COVID-19 in Vietnam after the country had gone about a month with no new local cases.

Besides the 14 cases in Ha Nam, 23 other domestically-transmitted infections have been recorded in multiple Vietnamese localities in the past seven days.

Vietnam has confirmed 2,985 coronavirus infections, including 1,607 local cases and 35 deaths, since the virus first struck the country on January 23, 2020, according to the health ministry’s data.

Recoveries reached 2,560 as of Tuesday morning.

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