Vietnam records first Covid-19 death, highest community transmissions

Residents wearing face masks wait to take a Covid-19 coronavirus swab test at the Thanh Xuan district medical centre in Hanoi on Saturday, May 15, 2021. - AFP

HANOI, May 15 (dpa): Vietnam on Saturday recorded its first Covid-19 death this year, and 165 new community transmissions of the coronavirus, marking the highest number of cases in one day since the start of the pandemic, authorities said.

The 89-year-old woman was diagnosed with severe pneumonia due to the coronavirus, but died with "underlying conditions," bringing the death toll as a result of the virus to 36, the Health Ministry said.

The new cases are linked to a 27-year-old man who returned to Vietnam from Japan on April 7, and a Chinese expert entering the nation for work, both of whom tested positive after completing their mandatory two-week quarantine.

Vietnam has repeatedly been praised for its response to the pandemic, yet after a month without any community transmissions of the coronavirus, local cases emerged again on April 27.

Since then, half of the new cases were detected at Quang Chau industrial park in the northern province of Bac Giang, the ministry said in a statement.

Vietnam's latest outbreak has spread to 26 of 63 provinces, authorities said.

The country has recorded a total 3,985 coronavirus cases, with 36 deaths, due largely to its strong containment record.

The country has recorded community transmissions of Covid-19 in 26 out of 54 provinces and cities, including the major cities of Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City.

The community cases were all detected in northern and central localities, including 94 in the northern Bac Giang province, 17 in the northern Bac Ninh province and 15 in the Vietnamese capital Hanoi, among others.

Most of them are contacts of previously confirmed patients or linked to the clusters of infections in the localities. - dpa
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