Two female nurses at Hanoi’s Bach Mai Hospital have become the first members of Vietnam’s medical force to be infected with the novel coronavirus, raising its patient tally to 87.
One patient is a 34-year-old nurse receiving people to Covid-19 quarantine zone of the hospital’s Center for Tropical Diseases. She exhibited symptoms like fatigue, fever and coughing on March 18, and tested positive for Covid-19 on the same day.
She was then transferred to the National Hospital for Tropical Diseases in Dong Anh District for quarantine and the second test also came back positive on the night of March 20. She’s been designated as “Patient 87.”
The other patient, “Patient 86” is her 54-year-old colleague, working at the HIV Outpatient Clinic of the hospital’s Center for Tropical Diseases. They had close contact at work.
“Patient 86” went with her family on a vacation from Hanoi to Con Dao on March 6 and came back two days later. She went to work as usual on March 9, asymptomatic. She started to get a tight chess on March 11, with no coughing or fever, before being admitted to Bach Mai’s Heart Institute to get treatment for hypertension and tight chest for the next four days.
On March 19, she was discharged from the Heart Institute. But as she was confirmed to have been in close contact with Patient 87, she was given Covid-19 test on March 19, and the result came back as positive. She tested positive the second time on March 20. She is quarantined for treatment in the same hospital as “Patient 87.”
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The Center for Tropical Diseases in Bach Mai has decided to stop receiving in-house patients starting Wednesday night, and two hospital rooms used for health check-up and Covid-19 screening would stop operating starting Thursday. In-house patients currently being treated in Bach Mai would be transferred to the National Hospital for Tropical Disease. The center has been disinfected.
Those who came in close contact with the nurses have tested negative for the coronavirus once, said the hospital. They are now all quarantined in a separate section of the hospital and will have their health closely monitored for 14 days per protocol.
The quarantine zone of Bach Mai is situated on the first floor. Employees working here are equipped with hats, masks, glasses and clothes, among others. “Patient 87” has worked there since early February.
So far, 17 infected cases in Vietnam have been cured and discharged.
The Covid-19 pandemic has spread to 182 countries and territories, claiming over 10,000 lives.