(AFP) — Vietnam has found a brand new Covid-19 variant which spreads shortly by air and is a mix of the Indian and British strains, state media reported Saturday.
The nation is struggling to take care of recent outbreaks throughout greater than half of its territory together with industrial zones and massive cities corresponding to Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh Metropolis.
Greater than 6,700 instances together with 47 deaths have been reported in Vietnam — the lion’s share have occurred since April.
“Now we have found a brand new hybrid variant from the Indian and the UK strains,” Well being Minister Nguyen Thanh Lengthy was quoted telling a nationwide assembly on the pandemic Saturday.
“The attribute of this pressure is that it spreads shortly within the air. The focus of virus within the throat fluid will increase quickly and spreads very strongly to the encircling setting.”
He didn’t specify the variety of instances recorded with this new variant however mentioned Vietnam will quickly announce the invention on the planet’s map of genetic strains.
There have been seven identified coronavirus variants in Vietnam earlier than Lengthy’s announcement, based on the Ministry of Well being.
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The communist nation has beforehand acquired widespread applause for its aggressive pandemic response, with mass quarantines and strict contact tracing serving to hold an infection charges comparatively low.
The brand new spherical of infections has made the general public and authorities fearful and authorities shortly moved to position strict limits on motion and enterprise exercise.
Cafes, eating places, hair salons and therapeutic massage parlours in addition to tourism and non secular spots have been ordered to shut in varied areas of the nation.
Vietnam — a rustic of 97 million individuals — has vaccinated a little bit over one million residents.
It’s now ramping up its jab rollout and hopes to realize herd immunity by the tip of the yr, based on the minister for well being.
Authorities have referred to as on individuals and companies to donate cash to assist procure vaccines, whereas embassies and worldwide organisations have been contacted for help, state media reported.
The nation presently has shut to 2 million doses of AstraZeneca’s vaccine remaining, however mentioned it’s shopping for greater than 30 million doses of the Pfizer shot.
Additionally it is in talks with Russia to supply Sputnik V, based on state media, and is engaged on a home-grown vaccine.
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