|The meeting of the Ministry of Health's professional council for COVID-19 treatment on May 5 (Photo: VNA)
Both lungs of the man, a pilot with a Vietnamese airline, are in poor conditions, Prof. and Dr. Nguyen Van Kinh, head of MoH’s professional council for COVID-19 treatment, said at a meeting on May 5.
Confirmed as a COVID-19 patient on March 18, the man has had a high fever since being hospitalised and his respiratory system been getting worse despite him being just 43 years old and in otherwise good health.
He is suffering from a blood clotting disorder and cytokine storm syndrome - an intense immune response where the immune system releases a lot of cytokines through the bloodstream, which actually works against instead of protecting the body.
As his body has been resistant to all types of clotting medication, the MoH has had to buy rare drugs overseas for his treatment, Kinh noted, adding that the patient has been on extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) - a life support machine - for 33 days, since April 6.
Of the two other severe cases, Patient 19 no longer needs support from an ECMO or a ventilator. She is now able to talk and eat and is in the rehabilitation process. Patient 161, meanwhile, has been free of COVID-19 and is receiving additional care at the Hanoi-based Bach Mai Hospital to recover from the effects of a stroke.
There have not been any deaths among the 288 confirmed COVID-19 cases in Vietnam.
Kinh said that regarding the death of Patient 251, the professional council affirmed that he died from cirrhosis, viral hepatitis, and chronic gout. He had earlier been cured of COVID-19 and monitored for a further 15 days, and he tested negative five times before continuing to receive treatment for liver disease at the General Hospital in northern Ha Nam province.
Prof. and Dr. Le Quang Cuong, former Deputy Minister of Health, told the meeting that all diagnoses, treatment, and testing guidelines in Vietnam closely follow recommendations from the World Health Organisation (WHO), the US Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and China. They have also been updated with findings from research and clinical trials around the world.
Experts from WHO and the CDC in Vietnam highly value local efforts in COVID-19 prevention and control. US specialists said they are ready to coordinate with Vietnam to build an appropriate testing strategy in the time ahead.