Vietnam finds new virus variant, hybrid of India, British strains | News, Sports, Jobs
HANOI, Vietnam – Vietnam has discovered a new variant of the coronavirus which is a hybrid of strains first found in India and the UK, Vietnam’s Minister of Health said on Saturday.
Nguyen Thanh Long said scientists looked at the genetic makeup of the virus that infected some recent patients and discovered the new version of the virus. He said lab tests suggested it could spread more easily than other versions of the virus.
Viruses often develop small genetic changes as they reproduce, and new variants of the coronavirus have been seen almost since it was first detected in China in late 2019. “Worrisome variants” – the first two found in the UK and India, plus those identified in South Africa and Brazil.
Long says the new variant could be responsible for a recent outbreak in Vietnam, which has spread to 30 of the country’s 63 municipalities and provinces.
Vietnam was initially a remarkable success in the fight against the virus – by the beginning of May it had recorded just over 3,100 confirmed cases and 35 deaths since the start of the pandemic.
But in recent weeks, Vietnam has confirmed more than 3,500 new cases and 12 deaths, bringing the country’s total death toll to 47.
Most of the new transmissions were found in Bac Ninh and Bac Giang, two provinces dense in industrial zones where hundreds of thousands of people work for big companies like Samsung, Canon and Luxshare, partner in the assembly of Apple products. Despite strict health regulations, a Bac Giang company found that a fifth of its 4,800 workers had tested positive for the virus.
In Ho Chi Minh City, the country’s largest metropolis with a population of 9 million, at least 85 people have tested positive as part of a cluster at a Protestant church, the ministry said. Health. Devotees sang and chanted seated side by side without wearing proper masks or taking other precautions.
Vietnam has since ordered a nationwide ban on all religious events. In major cities, authorities have banned large gatherings, closed public parks and non-essential activities, including restaurants, bars, clubs and in-person spas.
Vietnam has so far vaccinated 1 million people with AstraZeneca injections. Last week, it struck a deal with Pfizer for 30 million doses, which are expected to be delivered in the third and fourth quarters of this year. He is also in talks with Moderna who would give him enough vaccines to fully immunize 80% of its 96 million people.