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Vietnam Crossed 1,000 Daily Covid-19 Cases for the First Time Yesterday

July 5 was a dark day in Vietnam’s epidemic, as the country’s single-day COVID-19 case tally surpassed 1,000 for the first time since the pandemic began last year.

According to data from the Ministry of Health, as quoted by Zing, yesterday Vietnam confirmed 1,089 new cases of COVID-19, 974 of which belong to quarantined areas in 17 provinces and cities. Saigon, currently battling the nation’s biggest outbreak, topped the daily roster with 641 cases, followed by Dong Thap (165 cases) and Binh Duong (131 cases). 

With the new infections, Vietnam has recorded a total of 19,164 internal cases and 1,871 imported cases from repatriation flights. The latest outbreak this year, starting from April 27, accounts for over 17,000 of the total cases, though more than 5,000 patients have recovered so far.

Health authorities in the country have maintained the tried-and-true strategy of rapid contact-tracing, testing, and isolating to curb COVID-19 spread, though the highly transmissible nature of the Delta variant is making it difficult to contain. Across Saigon, the coronavirus has infiltrated the city’s weak spots and infected fast: many new clusters were discovered in industrial parks and wholesale markets, both of which have high population densities.

Starting from 8am today, July 6, District 8 authorities have shut down Binh Dien Market, the largest wholesale trading point in town, for disinfection and reinforcement of pandemic measures after a slew of new cases were detected recently.

Previously, market management restricted entrance only to vendors and shoppers with a certificate showing COVID-19 negative status and organized a testing drive in conjunction with district medical facilities. However, on July 5, photos surfaced online showing crowds of locals surrounding medical staff to seek testing forms, ignoring safety guidelines.

On a more sanguine note, the health ministry confirmed on Monday that the first batch of COVID-19 vaccines from Pfizer, containing 90,000 doses, will land in Hanoi tomorrow morning. A total of three million doses are expected to arrive in the third quarter as part of a deal Vietnam struck with the American company. The remaining 27–28 million doses will be delivered in the third quarter.

[Photo via Suc Khoe & Doi Song]