With the pandemic situation basically under control, both community cases and deaths are rising in many localities, the Minister of Health warned Friday.
In the past seven days, Vietnam recorded over 14,400 cases a day on average compared to 14,300 the previous week, while the average daily fatality rate rose to 218 from 187, Minister Nguyen Thanh Long told a meeting of the National Steering Committee for Covid-19 Prevention and Control.
In Ho Chi Minh City, the average number of daily infections in the past 14 days has risen by 12 percent against the previous 14 days. The rate in Hanoi is as high as 149 percent.
So far in the fourth wave that hit Vietnam in late April, more than 1.36 million cases have been confirmed, over one million of which have recovered.
The national death toll since the pandemic started stands at 18,561, including 18,526 recorded in the fourth wave alone.
“As the pandemic spreads through the community, new outbreaks could occur anytime, especially in areas with high population density and where people have a high demand for traveling and trade,” said Long.
The minister said it is necessary to continue to strengthen pandemic prevention and control measures, especially focusing on surveillance, early detection, treatment of severe cases to reduce mortality, and boosting vaccination.
He also warned localities of upcoming conditions and events that could facilitate the spread of the virus, including the transition from winter to spring, increase in the demand for traveling and trade on the occasions of New Year 2022 and Lunar New Year, to occur in early February, and the risk of the new strain Omicron, said to be more transmissible compared to Delta and previous strains as it carries many mutations.
“Besides, some units and people have grown negligent in preventing Covid-19 since almost all restrictions have been eased,” he said.