HCM City to protect vulnerable people to reduce COVID deaths

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A senior citizen gets a COVID-19 vaccine in HCM City’s Phú Nhuận District in August. The city is focusing on reducing the number of deaths from the disease by protecting people aged 65 and above and those with underlying health conditions. — VNA/VNS Photo

HCM CITY — HCM City’s COVID-19 testing, vaccination and treatment plans to focus on people aged over 65 or with underlying health conditions to reduce the death rate.

A plan to protect them includes making a list of households with members at high risk, and test vulnerable people twice in four days before December 18.

Authorities will then vaccinate people who have not been vaccinated fully, sending mobile teams to the houses of those who have trouble with mobility. Medical stations will quickly dispense anti-viral drugs and care for them.

The country’s COVID epicentre, which started reopening on October 1, saw a rising number of deaths last month.

There have been up to 70 deaths a day in the last two weeks, up from 30 at the start of November, mostly of unvaccinated people aged over 50 and with underlying conditions.

The number of new cases has also been increasing, and several districts have seen their risk level rise from ‘low’ to ‘medium.’

Dr Lê Quốc Hùng, head of the tropical diseases department at Chợ Rẫy Hospital, said a rise in the number of cases was to be expected following the easing of pandemic restrictions, but the city has things under control.

“The important thing is to limit the death rate.”

Many doctors have said people who put off vaccination should be fully vaccinated as soon as possible and given booster shots too.

The city plans to provide a third shot to 6.3 million people starting on December 10. — VNS

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