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Vietnam records the first death of Covid-19



Health workers are seen in a lane near the home of a COVID-19 patient while investigating infection links in Hanoi

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Reuters

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Vietnam had spent three months without any case of local transmission

Vietnam has recorded its first Covid-1

9 casualty, in a devastating blow to a country proud of its zero deaths.

The 70-year-old man was from the central city of Hoi An, state media reported on Friday.

No new infections had been reported for more than three months before an outbreak was reported in the nearby town of Da Nang this week.

Vietnam, which has a population of about 95 million, has reported only 509 cases since the pandemic began.

Unlike many other countries, Vietnam acted before it even had confirmed cases, closing borders before almost all travelers except returned citizens. Anyone entering the country must be quarantined in government facilities for 14 days and must undergo tests.

For a time, this approach appeared to be very effective, and no new local broadcasts were reported since mid-April.

The country received praise both for its timely efforts to contain the virus and for the care it could offer a Scottish pilot who spent two months in a coma after developing Covid-19.

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Multimedia subtitleScottish pilot Stephen Cameron spent 10 weeks in a coma in Vietnam

But earlier this week came the difficult news that new cases had been discovered in the popular town of Da Nang.

Tens of thousands of tourists from across the country were in the city at the time, many of whom believed the coronavirus threat had passed.

The government initially closed the city to visitors before ordering a total local blockade on Wednesday.

Earlier this week, Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc warned that all provinces and cities in the country after the outbreak of Da Nang.

“We need to act more quickly and fiercely to control the outbreak,” state media quoted.


What does this mean for Vietnam

For Bui Thu, BBC News Vietnamese

At first, major Vietnamese newspapers cited the coronavirus as the leading cause of the man’s death. But then, a moment later, the story was erased from most state media websites in the country.

The story only reappeared on their websites, as the National Steering Committee for Prevention and Control COVID-19 finally confirmed the news.

Speaking to the BBC’s Vietnamese service, Dr Luong Ngoc Khue, vice-chancellor of the Covid-19 National Taskforce Treatment Subcommittee, said the person “died of a heart attack, kidney cancer, blood pressure high and other serious diseases, while positive for coronavirus “.

Some speculate that the government found it difficult to announce the first death for fear of public embarrassment.

But, as the news was confirmed today, Vietnam is trying to carry out an aggressive prevention strategy to contain the virus, with many quarantine facilities and mobilizing all means and resources to care for each patient.

Since July 25, 93 cases linked to Da Nang have been reported, and now the city is once again blocked. Restrictions are also being reintroduced in many other cities and provinces.



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