Aug 07, 2020 / 00:42

Negative coronavirus rapid test results still imply transmission risk: Hanoi mayor

The Hanoitimes - The Hanoi mayor said that though the 72,000 people were tested quickly and got negative results, there is a strong probability of undetected Covid-19 infection.

The accuracy of Covid-19 quick test is only from 60% to 75%, so even suspected cases have tested negative for the coronavirus with this method, they still pose risk of transmission in the community, local media quoted Chairman of the municipal People's Committee Nguyen Duc Chung as saying at a meeting on August 5.

Hanoi has counted over 95,000 people who have recently returned from Danang, a fresh coronavirus epicenter, according to a report of the municipal Center for Disease Control (CDC).

 Chairman of the Hanoi People’s Committe Nguyen Duc Chung speaks at the meeting. Photo:

Some 72,000 people in Hanoi have so far taken Covid-19 quick test, of them only 12 cases had positive results, but their confimatory PCR tests were negative, the city’s CDC informed.

The Hanoi mayor said that though the 72,000 people who took quick testing got negative results, there is still a strong probability of undetected Covid-19-infection.

Mr. Chung cited Hanoi's latest patient, a 42-year-old male residing in Bac Tu Liem district, is a Covid-19 case linked to the outbreak in Danang. The man was negative for coronavirus after taking a rapid test at the ward health station. However, when he was retested at the Central Hospital for Tropical Diseases in Ha Nam province, he turned to be positive.

He added that the reported number of 95,000 people returning from Danang should be much larger because many came back from the beach city by road, rail and there are people of other provinces who have arrived in Hanoi with a Danang-linked travel history.

Mr. Chung, therefore, requested local authorities to keep checking the number of people returning from Danang and Quang Nam province and put them under quarantine at home for 14 days.

"All people who have returned from Danang since July 15 must take confirmatory PCR tests for Covid-19 even if they have taken a rapid test," Mr. Chung said, adding that only PCR tests are accurate and Hanoi must conduct PCR tests, “even on hundreds of thousands of people if we have to do it."

From now on until August 12, Hanoi is at high risk of coronavirus transmission in the community, thus the city needs to raise the Covid-19 alert to a higher level, everyone has to be vigilant and keep up with preventive measures, Mr. Chung stressed.

Since the Covid-19 resurgence in Danang in late July, Hanoi has recorded three Covid-19 cases so far.

Total cases of Covid-19 infection nationwide have reached 747, of which 392 have recovered, ten have died, and 345 are under treatment.