May 15, 2020 / 13:54

Vietnam mobilizes best doctors to cure British Covid-19 patient

The Hanoitimes - Vietnam is determined to cure a British pilot who has been in critical for more than a month.

Vietnam's best experts and doctors are doing their utmost to cure a 43-year-old British Covid-19 patient who has been in critical condition for more than a month, Spokesperson Le Thi Thu Hang of the country's Ministry of Foreign Affairs said at a press conference on May 14.

"We hope that the British patient will recover soon and return to normal life," Hang said.

She added that with a humanitarian spirit, Vietnam has endeavored to treat many foreign Covid-19 patients since the outbreak of the pandemic. Most of them have recovered and returned home.

However, the CT (computed tomography) scan results on the Briton have shown that his lungs had turned to fibrosis and lost function, only 10% of his lung is active, the Hospital for Tropical Diseases in Ho Chi Minh City said on May 13.

 Vietnam’s leading experts in organ transplants, active resuscitation and respiratory treatment meet to seek treatment for the British patient. Photo: Thanh Nien

The patient was admitted to Ho Chi Minh City Hospital for Tropical Diseases on March 20 after being confirmed to be positive on March 18. He has been on a ventilator for 16 days and put on Extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO), which involves pumping blood out of the body to a heart-lung machine that removes carbon dioxide and sends oxygen-filled blood back, for 39 days.

Previously, through online consultation with the Ministry of Health, a lung transplant was indicated for the British patient, who is a Vietnam Airlines pilot.

On May 12, Vietnam’s leading experts in organ transplants, active resuscitation and respiratory treatment once again met to seek treatment for the patient and still decided to conduct a lung transplant for him.

“We will try to do the best for the patient to keep him alive, not for the sake of keeping the record of no Covid-19 deaths in Vietnam,” a member of the expert group told Tuoi Tre newspaper.

The National Coordination Center for Human Organ Transplants said that there are currently 40 people volunteering to donate a part of their lungs to the British patient. None of them is acquaintance of the patient, but they have the desire to share a part of their body to save a human being.

The patient is the most severe Covid-19 case in Vietnam. Both of his lungs are condensed and test results for Covid-19 have come out negative and positive interleavedly multiple times, his liver enzymes level is high. He is currently being treated with antibiotics and dialysis and administered tranquilizers.

The Vietnam Airlines pilot was the first case of a cluster, the Buddha Bar and Grill in District 2, which turned out to be HCMC’s biggest Covid-19 outbreak with 19 cases.

Vietnam has recorded no Covid-19 deaths to date. The country has gone through 29 days without community transmission of the disease.