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74 volunteers receive made-in-Việt Nam COVID-19 vaccine in human trial’s Phase II



A volunteer receives a dose of Nano Covax, Việt Nam’s first COVID-19 vaccine, as the Phase 2 of the human trial begins at the Military Medical University on Friday. — VNA/ Photo Minh Quyết

HÀ NỘI — A total of 74 volunteers were given the Vietnamese COVID-19 vaccine, Nano Covax, in phase II of human trials on Friday.

Nanocovax is Việt Nam’s first COVID-19 vaccine reaching the human trial stage, developed by Nanogen Pharmaceutical Biotechnology JSC and the Military Medical University (MMU) in Hà Nội.

According to a representative from MMU, the phase 2 was held concurrently at two places, 35 were given the jabs at the MMU and Pasteur Institute in HCM City will administer the shots to 39 volunteers in the southern province of Long An.

The Phase 2 trial is expected to see the participation of up to 560 volunteers aged 18-60. Some of them have underlying health conditions such as hypertension and diabetes but are not too severe.

The trial of the vaccine at the two places, compared to the first phase where the vaccine is being administered in Hà Nội only, could speed up the progress by shortening the study time to three months instead of six months while ensuring scientific data is accurate, the representative said.

The first 35 volunteers in Hà Nội were chosen among about 300 people who registered to participate in the second-stage trial of the vaccine at the MMU after undergoing rigorous medical examinations. 

They are divided into four random groups to receive three doses of 25mcg, 50mcg and 75mcg of the vaccine or a placebo.

“Because the trial sees the participation of volunteers with underlying health conditions, we have been prepared for all scenarios and ensured safety for all volunteers,” said Lieutenant-General Đỗ Quyết, Director of the Military Medical University.

He said the results of the trial would be announced in May before the third stage trial during which only one single shot of the vaccine is to be injected for 10,000-15,000 people from domestic and foreign pandemic-hit areas.

Test results of the first phase of the COVID-19 vaccine showed that it is safe and has no serious complications and might be effective against B117, the new variant in the United Kingdom, Quyết said.

He also said the research team would evaluate the immune response carefully in the second phase.

“Although we have shortened the trial of the vaccine by half with great efforts by the research units, more efforts should be made and the compliance with set standards is a must,” said Deputy Prime Minister Vũ Đức Đam as he visited the first 35 volunteers on Friday.

He stressed the need to have a COVID-19 vaccine produced by Việt Nam as quickly as possible, adding that the successes of the trial would not only serve as effective against COVID-19 but also boost the pride of Vietnamese scientists who take part in the research and development of vaccines as well as of the public at large. 

Deputy Prime Minister Vũ Đức Đam, Head of the National Steering Committee for COVID-19 Prevention and Control, visited the volunteers and the medical staff involved in the vaccine trial at Military Medical University (MMU) in Hà Nội on Friday. — VNA/ Photo 

At the vaccine administration site in the southern province of Long An, a 57-year-old man from Thanh Phú Commune in the province’s Bến Lức District told Việt Nam News: “After I heard about the second phase of human trials on the media, I went to the health centre to register as a volunteer.”

“I feel very happy to get the vaccine.”

Another volunteer, 51, from the same commune said: “I was provided careful counselling about the vaccine. I also read about the results of the first phase. I trust the vaccine’s effectiveness. I was happy to be selected.”

Nguyễn Ngô Quang, deputy director of the Department of Science, Technology and Training, said: “Besides importing COVID-19 vaccines, the country also has to research and develop the vaccine to ensure health security.”

The imported vaccines are only meant for use now, and the country has to rely on domestic production in future, according to Quang.

The country also has other vaccine candidates being developed by the Institute of Vaccines and Medical Biologicals, the Company for Vaccine and Biological Production No 1 and the Centre for Research and Production of Vaccines and Biologicals. — 

A health worker administered the vaccine shot for a man in Long An Province during the human trial. — VNA/ Photo Đức Hạnh



Four returnees diagnosed with Covid-19



Medical workers of the National Hospital for Tropical Diseases in Hanoi take care of a Covid-19 patient. The Ministry of Health has reported four new imported Covid-19 cases – PHOTO: VNA

HCMC – The Ministry of Health has confirmed four fresh imported Covid-19 cases, including one in Kien Giang and three in Khanh Hoa, taking the country’s Covid-19 tally to 2,737 as of this morning, April 15.

Specifically, the case in Kien Giang is a 25-year-old man residing in Duong Kinh District, Haiphong City. On April 10, he entered Vietnam through the Ha Tien international border gate in Kien Giang and was quarantined in the province.

On April 13, he tested positive for Covid-19 and is being treated at the medical center of Ha Tien City.

The remaining patients include a woman and two men, aged 27, 32 and 26, respectively. The woman is a resident of Thua Thien-Hue Province, while the two men are from Ha Tinh Province.

They flew back to Vietnam from Japan through the Cam Ranh International Airport in Khanh Hoa on April 11 and were quarantined in the province. The three tested positive for Covid-19 on April 14 and are receiving treatment at the Khanh Hoa Hospital for Tropical Diseases.


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Breakfast @ Tien Phong News — April 15



Read what is in the news today:

COVID-19 Updates

— Vietnam reported 20 imported cases of COVID-19 on Wednesday afternoon and Thursday morning, raising the national tally to 2,737 patients, with 2,445 recoveries and 35 virus-related deaths, according to the Ministry of Health

— Ho Chi Minh City medical authorities said on Wednesday that the city had yet to receive the protocol of ‘vaccine passports,’ which are COVID-19 vaccination certificates to be granted for international visitors and stranded Vietnamese to enter the country, from the National Steering Committee for COVID-19 Prevention and Control.


— It is forecast to rain in the evening from Friday to April 23 in the southern Vietnamese region, according to the National Center for Hydro-meteorological Forecasting.

— More than 14 metric tons of fish died en masse due to an unknown reason on the section of the Ma River passing through Cam Thuy District in the north-central Vietnamese province of Thanh Hoa on Wednesday.

— Police in Ho Chi Minh City said on Wednesday that they had recently arrested a group of seven people for staging motorbike accidents on the streets to steal properties from commuters.

— One student has been successfully rescued from drowning while two others remain missing after a group of nine students went swimming at a local river in northern Phu Tho Province on Wednesday afternoon.

— An eighth-grade student critically knifed a seventh grader after being reprimanded by their school administrators for hitting the latter in southern Vinh Long Province on Wednesday afternoon.

— Two workers were dead and another was injured after a personnel lift overturned at a shipbuilding company in central Quang Ngai Province on Wednesday morning.


— The 2021 Vietnam International Trade Fair (Vietnam Expo), the 30th edition of its kind, opened at the Hanoi International Exhibition Center on Wednesday.

— E-stamping, a computer-based application with product information that can be retrieved on state agencies’ websites, must be used for imported tobacco and alcohol products from July 2022, according to the Ministry of Finance’s new instruction.

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Vietnam tightens security along southwestern border amidst rising COVID-19 risk



Localities in southwest Vietnam are tightening border management and security to minimize risk of COVID-19 spread as the pandemic situation in Cambodia becomes increasingly complicated.

In Long An Province, the provincial People’s Committee has ordered competent authorities to carry out regular inspection at local hotels and accommodation facilities, as well as patroling along border trails and ports to promptly detect any border jumpers.

Multiple quarantine centers have been reactivated with the capacity of up to 1,000 people, according to Huynh Minh Phuc, director of the Long An Department of Health.

Local authorities have been in regular contact with their counterparts in the neighboring country to stay updated on the pandemic developments.

A total of 36 checkpoints have been established along the 133-kilometer borderline in the province.

The administration in Dong Thap Province has been advising Vietnamese people living in Cambodia to refrain from returning home during this period.

Local authorities have also provided essential goods and medicine to overseas Vietnamese in difficult conditions.

An officer is on duty along the Vietnam-Cambodia border. Photo: Khoa Nam / Tien Phong

An officer is on duty along the Vietnam-Cambodia border. Photo: Khoa Nam / Tien Phong

Twenty-one checkpoints and 18 patrol units with the participation of more than 220 officers have been set up to tighten security along the border.

The province has administered 600 COVID-19 vaccine shots to medical staff and officers working in border areas.

In An Giang Province, 187 working groups have been on duty to prevent the spread of COVID-19 via the Vietnam-Cambodia border.

About 16 to 20 people travel from Cambodia to An Giang on a daily basis and all of them are quarantined upon arrival in accordance with regulations, said Colonel Bui Trung Dung, deputy commander of the provincial Border Guard Command.

In Kien Giang Province, which shares a 56-kilometer border with Cambodia, thousands of officers have been mobilized to maximize border management efforts.

Many patrol ships and speedboats have been tasked with managing the maritime border off Kien Hai, Phu Quoc, and Tho Chau Islands.

Local fishermen have agreed to assist the task force by reporting to competent authorities when they detect a suspicious boat.

A border guard officer talks with local residents in An Giang Province, Vietnam. Photo: Buu Dau / Tien Phong

A border guard officer talks with local residents in An Giang Province, Vietnam. Photo: Buu Dau / Tien Phong

Authorities in An Giang and Kien Giang have advised residents of the Khmer ethnic group to celebrate the Choul Chnam Thmey (Khmer New Year), which takes place from April 14 to 16, in a safe manner.

Residents were asked to avoid traveling across the border to visit their relatives, wear face masks during ceremonies and rituals, and limit crowded activities.

Vietnam has recorded 2,737 COVID-19 cases as of Thursday morning, with 2,445 recoveries and 35 deaths, according to the Ministry of Health.

The country has not recorded any community-based infections for nearly 40 days.

Meanwhile, the World Health Organization has recently warned that Cambodia is standing on the brink of a national tragedy following a sudden and huge surge in community transmissions and COVID-19-related deaths.

Cambodia has documented 4,874 COVID-19 cases so far, with 2,544 recoveries and 35 fatalities, according to the Khmer Times.

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