PM urges strengthening COVID-19 fight

Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc issued a directive on March 11, requesting stronger actions to prevent and control COVID-19 amid new developments of the outbreak.
A COVID-19 quarantine area at a military school of Hoa Binh province (Photo: VNA)
A COVID-19 quarantine area at a military school of Hoa Binh province (Photo: VNA)

The acute respiratory disease has been recorded in 105 countries with 114,000 infected people. Over the last 10 days, the numbers of infection cases and deaths have risen sharply.

In Vietnam, after 22 days without any new cases, 18 infection cases have been recorded over the last four days, including many from countries with large trading and traveller volumes with Vietnam.

Facing the new developments, the PM ordered ministries, sectors and localities to continue strictly and drastically implementing directions by the Party Central Committee’s Secretariat and the Government leader to minimise the spread of COVID-19, stay ready to deal with the outbreak, and protect people’s health and lives.

He asked them to gear up for all circumstances and keep in mind the spirit of “fighting the epidemic is like fighting an enemy” and “protecting people’s health and lives even at the expense of economic benefits”.

In particular, PM Phuc requested ministries, ministry-level agencies and the People’s Committees of provincial-level localities to push ahead with quickly detecting and strictly controlling sources of infection, both in the country and from other nations; quarantining or monitoring those who have contact with confirmed cases in line with the Health Ministry’s guidance; and checking people entering the country within the last 14 days but not having to stay at concentrated quarantine areas.

He also demanded tightened control of those entering Vietnam via points of entry by air, land and sea; and suspension of the unilateral visa exemption for citizens of, as well as for Vietnamese people and their spouses and children in Denmark, Norway, Finland, Sweden, the UK, France, Germany and Spain.

Health declaration is compulsory for all people entering Vietnam; those coming from or travelling through areas affected by the outbreak must be quarantined; and flights between the country and those areas, including those by foreign airlines, must be minimised, according to the directive.

The PM also asked agencies and localities to strictly manage and ensure safety for tourism activities, postpone overseas trips, and advise people against going aboard, especially the areas affected by COVID-19.

In his directive, the Government leader also ordered relevant parties to ready plans for large-scale quarantine; step up the research on COVID-19 prevention, treatment and vaccines; and strictly deal with persons publicising fake news, intentionally inflating prices or violating regulations on health declaration and quarantine.

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