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Health ministry asked to amend COVID-19 risk level assessment criteria

VGP – Deputy Prime Minister Vu Duc Dam has recently tasked the Ministry of Health to promptly review and amend guidelines on COVID-19 risk level assessment criteria.

January 10, 2022 2:21 PM GMT+7

Specifically, the ministry was assigned to revise Decision No. 4800/QD-BYT, dated October 12, 2022 on provisional guidelines on medical specialty for the implementation of Resolution No. 128/NQ-CP on provisional guidelines for safe and flexible adaptation to and effective control of COVID-19" in line with real COVID-19 situation in Viet Nam.

The ministry was also urged to provide specific instruction on usage of COVID-19 drugs (including anti-virus ones).

According to Decision 4800, the criteria for assessment of pandemic risk levels include: New confirmed cases in the community/population/duration (Criterion 1); Vaccination coverage (Criterion 2); Ensuring the receipt and treatment capacity of medical examination and treatment establishments at all levels (Criterion 3). In case the locality fails to satisfy Criterion 3, the pandemic risk level shall remain the same.

Accordingly, localities are responsible for evaluating disease risk levels of every district and commune and local risk levels in line with the criteria of Decision 4800 and outcomes are posted at https://capdodich.yte.gov.vn/map.

However, the criteria on new community cases among 100,000 residents per week has become inefficient at present, according to Deputy Minister of Health Nguyen Truong Son. Instead, Viet Nam has shifted focus on critically ill patients, hospital admission, fatality, and local treatment capacity which are among criteria to evaluate pandemic risks.

In addition, thanks to high vaccination coverage rates and the implementation of safe safety, flexibility, and effective control of COVID-19, the daily count of new infections no long plays important role.

The medical sector and localities are suggested to categorize critically ill patients and fatalities in different criteria namely vaccination, non-vaccination, chronic diseases, or late hospitalization.

As of early January, Viet Nam recorded over 1.8 million infections including 30 cases of Omicron. Up to 5,970 patients nationwide are in serious conditions, with 696 requiring invasive ventilation and 20 on life support (ECMO). The country saw 202 deaths from the disease. The death toll now hits 34,319, equal to 1.8 percent of the total caseload./.