Surging COVID-19 infections put huge burden on hospitals in Hanoi

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Surging COVID-19 infections put huge burden on hospitals in Hanoi

A house is fenced off for the quarantine and treatment of a COVID-19 patient in Hanoi. Photo: G.Doan / Tuoi Tre

A rapid increase in COVID-19 infections and hospitalizations in Hanoi has put a heavy burden on the local healthcare system, with many hospitals exposed to the risk of overcrowding.

An official of Hanoi Medical University Hospital told Tuoi Tre (Youth) newspaper on Tuesday that its COVID-19 treatment unit was under enormous pressure due to rising infections.

The facility is treating about 200 coronavirus patients, he added.

The surging new cases have led to a spike in hospitalizations, he stated, adding that about 10 in every 200 patients in the capital suffer serious symptoms.

To avoid overcrowding, Hanoi Medical University Hospital has only agreed to provide treatment for COVID-19 patients with severe symptoms, while those with milder manifestations are directed to other treatment facilities.

Dr. Nguyen Thu Huong, who is in charge of COVID-19 treatment at Thanh Nhan Hospital, stated that the infirmary has 100 beds preserved for patients with moderate symptoms.

However, the facility is currently treating 120 such patients, Huong said.

The hospital is providing treatment for about 20-30 patients with severe symptoms, she continued.

During its peak period, the institution had up to 40 seriously-ill patients who needed supplemental oxygen or breathing support.

Most of these patients were unvaccinated or did not have enough antibodies as they contracted the virus shortly after their inoculation, Dr. Huong explained.

As a way to relieve pressure from local hospitals, COVID-19 patients with no symptoms have been allowed to be quarantined and treated at home, according to Tran Thi Nhi Ha, director of the municipal Department of Health.

At the end of Monday, health authorities in Hanoi were providing treatment for 9,463 patients, of whom 3,340, or 35 percent, were monitored at home or by mobile medical stations.

A survey on 2.1 million households in the city showed that nearly 900,000 of them meet the requirements for home treatment, Ha said.

“The quarantine and treatment of coronavirus patients at home require close supervision from local authorities to prevent the spread of the disease,” the official stressed.

“Residents must also raise awareness of COVID-19 prevention and control during their home treatment.”

Hanoi has recorded more than 19,600 local infections since the fourth virus wave hit Vietnam on April 27.

The capital has seen a climb in new cases since late November.

On Monday, Hanoi documented 1,000 new patients, the highest daily count among provinces and cities in the country that day.

More than 6.8 million out of eight million people in the city have been vaccinated with at least one dose, while nearly 5.7 million have been jabbed twice, according to the national COVID-19 vaccination portal.

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