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Vietnam records 139 Omicron cases in 11 localities

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Four latest Omicron cases just detected in Binh Duong Province and Ho Chi Minh City, in southern Vietnam, have taken the total Omicron infections in the Southeast Asian country to 139, as recorded since the coronavirus variant was first reported in Hanoi in December last year, health authorities said.

The Binh Duong Province Department of Health on Sunday evening confirmed its first Omicron case, a Vietnamese woman who returned from Canada on January 9.  

On Monday morning, Ho Chi Minh City’s health department announced three more patients linked to the previous three Omicron community infections, VnExpress cited Dr. Nguyen Van Vinh Chau, deputy director of the department as saying.     

The Ministry of Health has yet to elaborate on the number of domestic cases included in the 139 Omicron infections registered in 11 localities, but in Ho Chi Minh City alone, six Omicron patients have been detected in the community thus far.

The city is topping the country’s list of Omicron infections with 71 patients, followed by Quang Nam with 27 cases, Hanoi with 14 cases, Khanh Hoa with 11 cases, Da Nang with eight cases, Thanh Hoa and Quang Ninh with two cases each, and Hai Duong, Hai Phong, Long An and Binh Duong with one case each.

Current COVID-19 vaccines can help prevent critical conditions as well as mortalities caused by all coronavirus strains including Omicron, so getting full vaccination is the best way to protect oneself in general, the Department of Health said.

To date, hospitalizations and deaths caused by Omicron have been relatively low in Vietnam thanks to high COVID-19 vaccine coverage, the department said.

The first Omicron infection in the Southeast Asian nation was announced on December 21 last year in a Vietnamese man who returned to Hanoi from the UK two days earlier.

The mutant was designated by the World Health Organization (WHO) as a variant of concern on November 26, 2021, two days after it was first reported to the WHO by South Africa.

The strain, which health experts stated appears to be more contagious but less virulent than previous mutants, has now been found in over 130 countries and territories and has become dominant in many places, according to international media.

“The infection rate of Omicron is likely seven times higher in the unvaccinated group and three times higher in the fully vaccinated demographic, so it may lead to a very rapid increase in infection cases, overloading the health system and pushing up deaths,” Vietnamese Minister of Health Nguyen Thanh Long warned.

Therefore, it is necessary to continue strengthening epidemic prevention and control efforts, Long said.

The health ministry said it has been updating information about the Omicron strain from the WHO in order to cope with any new epidemic developments.

Vietnam has documented 2,141,422 COVID-19 cases, with 1,804,849 recoveries and 36,719 mortalities, the Ministry of Health’s data shows.

Heath workers have administered 78.86 million first vaccine doses, 73.88 million second shots, and 23.15 million third jabs to people nationwide since vaccination was rolled out in March 2020, the Ministry of Health reported on Sunday.

Currently, 100 percent of the adult population of the Southeast Asian nation have received their first COVID-19 vaccine doses, while 48 among the country’s 63 cities and provinces have reached a second-jab rate of more than 90 percent.

The ministry has urged all localities to complete the coverage of second vaccine doses for children aged 12 to 17 within this month, while preparing for immunizing children from five to 12 years old.

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Source: https://tuoitrenews.vn/news/society/20220124/vietnam-records-139-omicron-cases-in-11-localities/65397.html

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Science, technology, innovation pushed for economic development

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Scientific research in universities needed pushing up to create a high-qualified human resource for the industrialised economy. Photo nhandan.vn

HÀ NỘI – Deputy Prime Minister Vũ Đức Đam has signed Decision No. 569/QĐ-TTg dated May 11 issuing a strategy for scientific-technological development and Innovation to 2030.

Accordingly, science, technology and innovation will further contribute to economic growth through scientific research and technological development activities of research institutes and universities.

Innovation activities will also help improve management and organisational capacity in enterprises.

The specific objective of the strategy is that science, technology and innovation play an important role in developing spearhead industries, especially the processing and manufacturing industry, making an important contribution to the restructuring of the economy towards modernisation and industrialisation by 2030 as well as take advantage of opportunities of the Fourth Industrial Revolution.

By 2030, the proportion of the value of high-tech industrial products in the processing and manufacturing industries will reach at least 45 per cent of the total economy.

One of the main tasks and solutions for the development of science and technology and innovation is to build a national innovation system.

Specifically, a national innovation ecosystem closely linked with the region and the world is needed.

It is necessary to develop innovation ecosystems in industries, agriculture and services associated with domestic and global value chains, in which large enterprises act as a key role in leading innovation activities. State management agencies need to create a favourable institutional environment and policies so as to promote linkages between enterprises, research institutes, universities and organisations in research, application and innovation activities.

A system of national and regional innovation centres and start-up centres needs to be set up to create innovation hubs linking with high-tech zones, residential areas, financial centres, venture capital funds, universities and research institutes.

It is also essential to vigorously deploy open innovation platforms and networks in order to attract all domestic and foreign investment resources to create new technologies, new products, and new businesses.

Human resources

Other key tasks and solutions of the strategy are to develop human resources for science, technology and innovation with high qualifications and creative capacity.

Therefore, it must strengthen training in science and technology, computer skills, foreign languages, and creative design capacity associated with practical projects in high schools, especially through STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) and STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts, and math) training forms.

Orientation of science and engineering careers in schools and universities should further promoted along with reforming training programmes for science and technology in universities to meet the requirements of the labour market.

The Government should quickly build up a team of leading scientists, to step by step raise the standards of scientists in line with the standards in developed countries.

Under the strategy, two-way human resource transfer between the public and private sectors is also encouraged.

It also needs proper mechanisms and policies to attract highly qualified human resources from abroad and overseas Vietnamese to participate in domestic science, technology and innovation activities and develop networks to connect the overseas Vietnamese community of scientists to work in Việt Nam.

Honouring outstanding intellectuals

Amid the Fourth Industrial Revolution, the Party has defined that science-technology and innovation is a strategic breakthrough for national development, and the contingent of scientists is the core of this process, stated President Nguyễn Xuân Phúc at a ceremony held in Hà Nội on Saturday to honour 106 outstanding intellectuals in the field of science and technology in 2022.

“The dream of a prosperous Việt Nam can only be realised under the guidance of the light of knowledge,” he said. 

Addressing the event held by the Việt Nam Union of Science and Technology Associations (VUSTA), the State leader highlighted the great attention that the Party and State have given to the development of science, technology and innovation as well as intellectuals in the field.

He hailed the VUSTA’s role in connecting Vietnamese scientists inside and outside the country over the past 40 years, significantly contributing to the country’s socio-economic development, and political and security-defence stability.

He noted that so far, the union has gathered more than 3.7 million experts, including 2.2 million in the field of science and technology, accounting for 32.5 per cent of the total intellectuals of the country.

The contingent of scientists have built up the national innovative capacity, the President said, noting that last year, Việt Nam became one of the top 45 leading countries in the world in terms of innovation, and took the lead in the list of middle-income economies in Global Innovation Index (GII).

He asked the VUSTA, as the representative body for scientists and intellectuals, and an important part of the country’s political system, should play a greater role in giving advice to the Party, State and Government on science-technology and innovation policies as well as financial mechanisms to better unite Vietnamese intellectuals, contributing to successfully realise national development goals in the new period.

At the ceremony, President Phúc, National Assembly Deputy Chairman Nguyễn Đức Hải and VUSTA leaders presented the title of Outstanding Science and Technology Intellectual to the 106 exemplary intellectuals. —

Source: https://vietnamnews.vn/society/1194119/science-technology-innovation-pushed-for-economic-development.html

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1,319 new COVID-19 transmissions reported on Sunday

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A boy is vaccinated against COVID-19 in Hà Nội. — VNA/ Photo

HÀ NỘI — Việt Nam reported 1,319 new COVID-19 infections on Sunday, bringing the national total to 10,708,887.

Hà Nội again topped the list of new transmissions with 347, followed by the northern province of Bắc Ninh with 138.

The other areas that recorded infections were Vĩnh Phúc (90), Nghệ An (82), Yên Bái (61), Quảng Ninh (58), Tuyên Quang (51), Phú Thọ (50), Hải Dương (40), Thái Nguyên (39), Thái Bình (35), Đà Nẵng (33), Lào Cai (32), Nam Định (21), Hà Tĩnh (19), Quảng Bình (19), Lâm Đồng (19), Bắc Kạn (17), Cao Bằng (17), Hải Phòng (17), Hưng Yên (16), Hà Nam (13), Thanh Hóa (12), HCM City (12), Lạng Sơn (10), Hòa Bình (10), Sơn La (10), Bình Phước (7), Hà Giang (6), Quảng Trị (6), Bình Định (6), Gia Lai (5), Ninh Bình (4), Bến Tre (3), Bình Thuận (3), Bắc Giang (3), Lai Châu (2), Bà Rịa-Vũng Tàu (2), Bình Dương (1), Thừa Thiên-Huế (1), Cần Thơ (1) and Hậu Giang (1).

There were no COVID-related deaths on Sunday. The total death toll so far in Việt Nam is 43,075. 

8,945 recoveries were recorded, bringing the total number given the all-clear to 9,402,046 so far. 

There are 211 COVID patients nationwide currently receiving oxygen support, including two on life support.

A total of 36,346 vaccine doses were administered on Sunday. Việt Nam has so far administered more than 219 million doses of COVID vaccines —

Source: https://vietnamnews.vn/society/1194107/1319-new-covid-19-transmissions-reported-on-sunday.html

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Việt Nam reports 1,319 new cases on Sunday

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Việt Nam reports 1,319 new cases on Sunday, all local. The cases are in Hà Nội (347), Bắc Ninh (138), Vĩnh Phúc (90), Nghệ An (82), Yên Bái (61), Quảng Ninh (58), Tuyên Quang (51), Phú Thọ (50), Hải Dương (40), Thái Nguyên (39), Thái Bình (35), Đà Nẵng (33), Lào Cai (32), Nam Định (21), Hà Tĩnh (19), Quảng Bình (19), Lâm Đồng (19), Bắc Kạn (17), Cao Bằng (17), Hải Phòng (17), Hưng Yên (16), Hà Nam (13), Thanh Hóa (12), Hồ Chí Minh (12), Lạng Sơn (10), Hòa Bình (10), Sơn La (10), Bình Phước (7), Hà Giang (6), Quảng Trị (6), Bình Định (6), Gia Lai (5), Ninh Bình (4), Bến Tre (3), Bình Thuận (3), Bắc Giang (3), Lai Châu (2), Bà Rịa – Vũng Tàu (2), Bình Dương (1), Thừa Thiên Huế (1), Cần Thơ (1), Hậu Giang (1).

Source: https://vietnamnews.vn/society/1194094/viet-nam-reports-1319-new-cases-on-sunday.html

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