HCMC prepares isolation areas with nearly 24,000 beds

HCMC Department of Health is working with the HCMC High Command to organize isolation areas with 22,998 beds. In addition, districts have been preparing their isolation areas with 798 beds as well as separate quarantine facilities to isolate those testing positive for Covid-19 to prevent cross infection.
Passengers make medical declaration at Tan Son Nhat Airport on March 18 (Photo: SGGP)
Passengers make medical declaration at Tan Son Nhat Airport on March 18 (Photo: SGGP)

Reporting at a teleconference on the Covid-19 pandemic prevention presided over by deputy chairman of HCMC People’s Committee Le Thanh Liem, the Health Department said that HCMC has recorded 11 cases of Covid-19 infection, of these three have recovered while eight have been in stable health condition without using breathing machines.

In the total of 177 suspected cases, 173 have tested positive for the novel corona virus and four are waiting for testing results. So far, 1,424 people have moved to isolation areas of the city and 497 people have moved to isolation areas in districts. A total of 615 people have been under home quarantine.

From March 11-18, Vietnam recorded a rise of 34 Covid-19 infection cases comprising seven in HCMC. Of the seven cases in HCMC, three are infectious and four come from other areas outside the city.

Deputy Chairman of HCMC People’s Committee Le Thanh Liem said that there should be a contingency plan, in which isolation areas will use a maximum of 80 percent of their beds, at least 20 percent should be spare. In addition rhythmic coordination among relevant agencies and districts is needed to isolate infections.

Mr. Liem proposed Military Region 7 and the HCMC High Command to intensify ordnance support to the city and required the Department of Industry and Trade to ensure enough supply of face masks for students, civil servants and officials and residents in the city.

In the afternoon on March 18, deputy director of the Department of Tourism Nguyen Thi Anh Hoa said that currently nine hotels and resorts have registered to be isolation places. The department will work with the Department of Health to conduct a survey on places meeting quarantine regulations.

Meantime, the dormitory of the National University in HCMC have stopped receiving students to prevent the pandemic. Professor Dr. Huynh Thanh Dat, principal of the university, said that if necessary, the university’s Center for National Defense Education could be used for isolation with 3,000 beds and two canteens.

Professor Dr. Nguyen Tan Binh, director of the HCMC Department of Health, said that the Disease Control Center in HCMC had been asked to work with the International Health Quarantine Center of Ho Chi Minh City and relevant sides to take samples of passengers returning Vietnam from pandemic hit countries and territories at airports for Covid-19 testing.

If congestion occurs at border gates and airports, samples will be taken at isolation areas. Samples of suspected cases must be sent to Pasteur Institute in HCMC to do positive test. Those tested positive for SARS-CoV-2 will be taken to medical facilities for treatment. After recovering and testing negative, they must continue undergoing 14 day quarantine.

On the same day, Mr. Nguyen Van Chau, director of HCMC Tropical Disease Hospital said that the 32th patient has tested negative for the virus and no longer use antibiotic.