Vietnam mulls shift to Covid endemic path as virus surges

Vietnam mulls shift to Covid endemic path as virus surges

Passengers wearing protective face masks check-in at Noi Bai airport in Hanoi on Oct 10, 2021, as the Vietnamese government has allowed reopening several domestic air routes. (Reuters photo)
Passengers wearing protective face masks check-in at Noi Bai airport in Hanoi on Oct 10, 2021, as the Vietnamese government has allowed reopening several domestic air routes. (Reuters photo)

Vietnam’s Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh directed the Health Ministry to begin the process of moving the country to the course of living with Covid-19 and treating it as endemic even as cases surge.

Chinh ordered officials during Thursday’s cabinet meeting to study how other countries have made the move, according to a post on the government’s website. The prime minister said March and coming months will continue to be difficult and unpredictable as the country battles the virus and the fallout from the conflict in Ukraine. 

Vietnam reported 118,790 virus cases, including 10 imported, on Thursday, an increase of 8,500 from a day earlier, the health ministry said on its website.

The country, which is rolling out booster shots after more than 90% of its adult population has been given two vaccine shots, has seen a dramatic drop in Covid-19 deaths. It has had a daily average of 95 deaths over the past seven days, according to the ministry’s publication Suc Khoe Doi Song. In August, when the government locked down large parts of the nation with evening curfews, daily virus deaths hit more than 300.

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