COVID-19 downgraded to Group B infectious disease

09:54, 22/10/2023

COVID-19 is no longer an infectious disease in Group A but downgraded to Group B from October 20, according to a decision issued on October 19 by the Ministry of Health (MoH).

A health worker collects sample for COVID-19 testing. (Photo: VNA)
A health worker collects sample for COVID-19 testing. (Photo: VNA)

With the downgrade, based on Point b of Clause 1 and Clause 2 of Article 3 in the 2007 Law on Prevention and Control of Infectious Diseases, COVID-19 prevention and control activities will be carried out in line with the regulations on Group B ones.
On January 29, 2020, the MoH classified the coronavirus disease 2019 as a Group A infectious disease.

According to the 2007 law, Group A comprises particularly dangerous infectious diseases that can spread very fast and on a large scale and have a high mortality rate or unclear causes. Meanwhile, Group B covers the infectious diseases that can spread fast and cause death.

Recently, Deputy Prime Minister Tran Hong Ha signed a decision amending an appendix that regulates the incubation period and the required period of no new infections to serve as the basis for declaring end to an infectious disease outbreak. This appendix accompanies the Prime Minister’s Decision No 02/2016/QD-TTg, dated January 28, 2016, on the conditions to declare an outbreak and end to an outbreak of an infectious disease.

In the amended appendix, COVID-19 is a Group B infectious disease which has an incubation period of four days. The time with no new cases needed to declare an outbreak end is eight days. The earlier regulations put the respective periods at 14 days and 28 days.

The reduction of the periods was based on the scientific ground, the current situation of the pandemic, and recommendations from the World Health Oganisation (WHO) and the US Centres for Disease Control and Prevention.

Since the pandemic broke out, Vietnam has undergone four waves of COVID-19 infections with 11,624,065 cases, ranking 13th among 231 countries and territories. With an average of 117,470 cases per 1 million people, it ranks 120th in this regard.

Among the infections, it has recorded 10,640,953 recoveries and 43,206 deaths, accounting for 0.4% of the total.

The country has administered 266,532,582 doses of COVID-19 vaccine so far, statistics show./.