Vietnam recorded nearly 3,300 COVID-19 cases on Thursday, the highest daily count in more than three months, with the Ministry of Health attributing the resurgence to the new fast-spreading Omicron sub-variants.
The health ministry documented 3,295 COVID-19 patients on Thursday, raising the national tally to 11,376,571, with 10,049,215 recoveries and 43,103 deaths.
The country has so far detected four Omicron sub-variants including BA.4, BA.5, BA.2.12.1, and BA.2.74, which are more transmissible than the original strain, according to the General Department of Preventive Medicine under the health ministry.
At Hanoi’s COVID-19 treatment hospital, the number of patients has bounced back in the past week.
The facility is providing treatment for about 35-37 patients, most of whom have underlying conditions.
Nguyen Minh Tien, deputy director of the Ho Chi Minh City Children’s Hospital, stated that COVID-19 pediatric patients at the infirmary have increased in recent days.
Doctors need to pay close attention to these patients as there has not been any conclusion about the dangers that the new variants pose to children, Tien stated.
The Ho Chi Minh City Department of Health recently asked hospitals to ready their COVID-19 treatment facilities as well as prepare for the reactivation of a makeshift hospital when cases rise steeply.
Tran Dac Phu, senior advisor at the Ministry of Health, believed that the actual number of cases is higher.
“Many people with mild symptoms did not report to the local health authorities, while those with no symptoms were not even aware they had contracted the virus,” Phu elaborated.
The coronavirus can be long-lived, become milder, and circulate in the community similar to seasonal flu. Otherwise, it can have more severe mutations that current vaccines are not effective against.
“The situation is quite complicated and unpredictable,” he said.
Regarding the BA.2.74 sub-lineage, people should not be too worried because there are no clear conclusions about the severity of this strain.
However, some experts said that new sub-variants are able to spread quickly and evade immunity.
In order to effectively prevent pandemic, the health sector needs to closely monitor and accurately assess the situation.
Meanwhile, residents should not let their guard down and continue to take preventive measures such as wearing face masks, sanitizing hands, and avoiding close contact with people with suspected COVID-19 symptoms.
“Vaccination is still an effective way to prevent the disease, reduce the risk of having serious symptoms or mortality, and prevent the health system from being overloaded,” Phu stressed.
People should receive their booster shots in accordance with the instructions of the Ministry of Health.
Parents should also take their children to local inoculation sites prior to the beginning of the new school year.