Taking samples for testing COVID-19 (Photo: VNA)

Increasing vigilance over COVID-19 new situation

According to the Prime Minister, this new COVID-19 outbreak is different from the first as it has developed swiftly and spread to communities for many days, leading to high risk of transmission in localities, especially large cities, and provinces and cities surrounding Da Nang city. “Localities need to give full dissemination of preventive measures,” he stressed.

The Prime Minister requested the National Steering Committee on COVID-19 Prevention and Control, the Ministry of Health and localities to strictly implement the official dispatch of the Secretariat, the call of the Party General Secretary and the State President, the direction of the Prime Minister and the Committee and the Steering Committee. “The localities must raise alertness, localities’ leaders and the whole political system must take part in the prevention and people must be vigilant to implement issued common preventive measures", he went on to say.

The health and financial sectors as well as localities were urged to ensure the quality of the health system, especially the equipment and testing tools and staff, to ensure the rapid tracing of suspected cases and isolation.

Asking for testing capacity to be strengthened, he told the Ministries of Health and National Defence to provide Da Nang with the necessary equipment and personnel, as well as other localities when needed.

Vietnam News Agency quoted the Prime Minister saying that he supported plans to increase patient reception at central and military hospitals along with healthcare establishments in central Hue city and Quang Nam province, as many of the confirmed cases in Da Nang have other serious illnesses.

The Government leader demanded that each locality gear up its response plans, as happened during the first period of the COVID-19 combat, and that those plans include recommendations to the public on limiting travel, wearing a face mask in crowded places and on public transport, washing their hands with soap, and sanitising their homes and workplaces.

The Ministries of National Defence and Public Security must ensure good border management, while localities with confirmed cases must delay any major festivals and restrict mass gatherings.

The Health Ministry also needs to more strictly monitor people with possible symptoms or who had direct contacts with infected patients. The Ministry of Education and Training and localities must also ensure safety at the upcoming national high school examinations, the PM said.

Vietnam will keep COVID-19 under control: Foreign media

Foreign media have run articles appreciating the Vietnamese Government’s response following newly-confirmed COVID-19 cases in the community, voicing a belief that the country can bring the situation under control.

In the article “Vietnam’s Next Wave of COVID-19 Has Arrived” published on The Diplomat on July 27th, the newspaper confirmed “Vietnam will likely be able to bring the next wave under control, thanks to its experience and its improved readiness in terms of necessary equipment.”

According to the article, “the Vietnamese government took measures early to contain the spread of COVID-19, and it has successfully controlled the previous two waves, respectively in January and March, illustrated by its current low case count and zero deaths. Hence, the government can be optimistic that with its previous experience, Vietnam can handle the next wave well.”

It stressed Vietnam’s experience in combating the pandemic over the past months, together with more advanced equipment. “The better equipment is also helpful for Vietnam in raising the community’s awareness, which is considered one of the main factors for its previous effectiveness in containing COVID-19,” it said.

An article in Bloomberg News on July 28th noted that the Vietnamese Government has worked to contain a sudden flare-up in community infections, making face masks mandatory once again.

A worker fumigates the house of a person having close contact with the 416th patient in Da Nang city on July 24th (Photo: VNA)

The same day, Japan’s Nikkei newspaper reported that Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc has ordered tighter border and immigration controls in order to curb the spread of COVID-19.

CNN on July 27th also ran an article saying that “Vietnamese authorities are rushing to nip a potential new outbreak in the bud after the Southeast Asian nation recorded its first locally-transmitted case of Covid-19 in 100 days on Saturday”.

According to the article, “after the case was announced, Vietnam's Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc demanded that contact tracing be ramped up and large-scale testing conducted across the city, according to a government press release.”

The article also quoted public health experts saying that “Vietnam's success lies in a combination of factors, from the government's swift, early response to prevent its spread, to strict contact-tracing and quarantining and effective public communication.”

Vietnam’s experience in COVID-19 prevention

At the opening day of the 9th session of the 14th National Assembly on May 20th, Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc said that the prevention of COVID-19 had brought Vietnam many valuable experiences that need to be continued to be promoted.

First of all, there must be the right, firm and timely leadership of the Party and State together with the high determination and strong action of the entire political system; close and effective coordination between levels, branches, localities and authorised agencies in implementing measures.

The next experience is to arouse the solidarity and kindness of the people of the whole country, the business community in joining hands to act and ensure social security.

In addition, along with promoting international integration, it is necessary to develop an independent and resilient economy, promoting the role of science and technology and innovation; enhancing proactiveness and dynamism of all levels and branches, especially grassroots authorities and the entire population in preventing and fighting the pandemic and restoring and boosting socio-economic development.

It is also necessary to do well the dissemination of information for encouraging people and businesses to strictly and efficiently carry out preventive measures.

On the other hand, Vietnam has proactively put forth initiatives and participated in the international community's efforts to prevent and fight the pandemic and address global challenges, contributing to promoting the country’s international integration, thus enhancing its position and prestige in the international arena./.

Compiled by BTA