Vietnam reports more than 2 dozen new cases, 2nd death

Residents wait to be tested at a makeshift rapid testing centre in Hanoi

Today, the Health Ministry confirmed 12 more cases, all linked to the hospital. But a week ago an outbreak began at the Da Nang hospital.

The new cases, aged between two and 78, are all community cases with epidemiological history related to the central city of Da Nang, the country's epicenter at the moment, the health ministry said.

Vietnam reported 28 new virus cases on Saturday - 20 from Da Nang hospitals, six from local community transmissions in Da Nang and two Vietnamese nationals returning from Indonesia.

Vietnamese state media reported on Friday the country's first ever death of a person with the coronavirus as it struggles with a renewed outbreak after 99 days without any cases.

The Health Ministry said the latest fatalities included a 68-year old woman who was treated for blood cancer and a 61 year-old man who suffered septic shock and chronic kidney failure.

But since then almost 100 people who had travelled to Danang have tested positive across the country, leaving health authorities scrambling to snuff out the outbreak. Before the latest outbreak Vietnam had a total of only 416 cases.

Among the 8,300 samples tested during the period, 87 proved positive, municipal health authorities said. Hanoi is expected to test about 21,000 people who declared that they had recently returned from Da Nang.

But that changed over the weekend, when a man tested positive for COVID-19 in the southern city of Danang, a beach resort usually packed with tourists. Other cases this week were confirmed in Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City and other cities and provinces. The popular destination was put under lockdown Tuesday, and testing and business restrictions increased in other areas. The city on Friday began setting up a makeshift hospital in a sport auditorium and doctors have been mobilized from other cities to help.

Vietnam recorded its first coronavirus death on Friday as the pandemic rebounds in a country that had previously been praised for stubbing out the contagion.

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