The first community outbreak of COVID-19 in Viet Nam: description and lessons learned

Authors

  • Duong Nhu Tran National Institute of Hygiene and Epidemiology, Ministry of Health, Hanoi, Viet Nam
  • Quynh Mai Thi Le National Institute of Hygiene and Epidemiology, Ministry of Health, Hanoi, Viet Nam
  • Hien Tran Nguyen National Institute of Hygiene and Epidemiology, Ministry of Health, Hanoi, Viet Nam
  • Nghia Duy Ngu National Institute of Hygiene and Epidemiology, Ministry of Health, Hanoi, Viet Nam
  • Khoa Trong Nguyen Agency of Health Examination and Treatment, Ministry of Health, Hanoi, Viet Nam
  • Tuan Hai Nguyen National Institute of Hygiene and Epidemiology, Ministry of Health, Hanoi, Viet Nam
  • Tu Anh Tran National Institute of Hygiene and Epidemiology, Ministry of Health, Hanoi, Viet Nam
  • Tu Huy Ngo National Institute of Hygiene and Epidemiology, Ministry of Health, Hanoi, Viet Nam
  • Mai Phuong Vu Hoang National Institute of Hygiene and Epidemiology, Ministry of Health, Hanoi, Viet Nam
  • Anh Duc Dang National Institute of Hygiene and Epidemiology, Ministry of Health, Hanoi, Viet Nam

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.5365/wpsar.2020.11.2.016

Abstract

Objective: At the time of this study, the prevention of novel coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) relied solely on
nonpharmaceutical interventions. Implementation of these interventions is not always optimal and, consequently,
several cases were imported into non-epidemic areas and led to large community outbreaks. This report describes the
characteristics of the first community outbreak of COVID-19 in Viet Nam and the intensive preventive measures taken in
response.

Methods: Cases were detected and tested for SARS-CoV-2 by real-time reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction.
Contact tracing and active surveillance were conducted to identify suspected cases and individuals at risk. Clinical
symptoms were recorded using a standardized questionnaire.

Results: In Vinh Phuc province from 20 January to 3 March 2020, there were 11 confirmed cases among 158 suspected
cases and 663 contacts. Nine of the confirmed cases (81.8%) had mild symptoms at the time of detection and two
(18.2%) were asymptomatic; none required admission to an intensive care unit. Five prevention and control measures
were implemented, including quarantining a community of 10 645 individuals for 20 days. The outbreak was successfully
contained as of 13 February 2020.

Discussion: In the absence of specific interventions, the intensive use of combined preventive measures can mitigate the
spread of COVID-19. The lessons learned may be useful for other communities.

Author Biographies

Duong Nhu Tran, National Institute of Hygiene and Epidemiology, Ministry of Health, Hanoi, Viet Nam

Director Board

Quynh Mai Thi Le, National Institute of Hygiene and Epidemiology, Ministry of Health, Hanoi, Viet Nam

Director Board

Hien Tran Nguyen, National Institute of Hygiene and Epidemiology, Ministry of Health, Hanoi, Viet Nam

Department of Planning and International Relations

Nghia Duy Ngu, National Institute of Hygiene and Epidemiology, Ministry of Health, Hanoi, Viet Nam

Department of Communicable Disease Prevention and Control

Khoa Trong Nguyen, Agency of Health Examination and Treatment, Ministry of Health, Hanoi, Viet Nam

Agency of Health Examination and Treatment, Ministry of Health, Hanoi, Vietnam

Tuan Hai Nguyen, National Institute of Hygiene and Epidemiology, Ministry of Health, Hanoi, Viet Nam

Department of Communicable Disease Prevention and Control

Tu Anh Tran, National Institute of Hygiene and Epidemiology, Ministry of Health, Hanoi, Viet Nam

Department of Communicable Disease Prevention and Control

Tu Huy Ngo, National Institute of Hygiene and Epidemiology, Ministry of Health, Hanoi, Viet Nam

Department of Communicable Disease Prevention and Control

Mai Phuong Vu Hoang, National Institute of Hygiene and Epidemiology, Ministry of Health, Hanoi, Viet Nam

Department of Virology

Anh Duc Dang, National Institute of Hygiene and Epidemiology, Ministry of Health, Hanoi, Viet Nam

Director Board

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Published

27-04-2021

Issue

Section

COVID-19: Outbreak Investigation Report