COVID-19 patients discharged from Vietnam’s National Hospital for Tropical Diseases. (Photo: VNA)
That was part of the article run on Germany’s Frankfurt FAZ on April 2nd in which it praised the Southeast Asian country’s effective COVID-19 prevention strategy, and raised the question of whether Western countries can learn from Vietnam’s prevention formula.
According to the article, in the early days of the disease, Vietnam closed schools, tightened preventive and control measures at border areas with China, isolated SARS-CoV-2 virus positive cases, and searched for those who had direct or indirect contact with COVID-19 cases.
Vietnam is also the first country, after China, isolating an entire community of some 10,000 people.
The article quoted Mr. Poll Pollack, an expert on infectious diseases of the Harvard Medical School, saying that the experience in SARS prevention remained and Vietnam, from early days, strictly followed the development of the disease in China.
Prompt and adequate measures helped Vietnam report only 16 cases in the first phase and it was proud to announce that it had successfully cured and treated all these 16 patients, with no new cases then discovered for the ensuing 3 weeks.
The second phase in Vietnam started from those who returned from Europe, including many tourists, bringing the virus to many parts of the country and even new cases were found in one of the largest hospitals.
Stricter measures have been carried out in Vietnam, including mandating isolation for 14 days for all entering the country, and at present, some 75,000 people are being isolated at military foundations or at home.
It has also suspended visa granting and entrance for tourists from infected European areas. Meanwhile, Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc issued a range of stringent social distancing measures, including restricting people from leaving their homes and banning gatherings of more than two people in public.
According to the article, one of the reasons behind successful prevention in Vietnam is the mobilization of people’s strength through public campaigns, through message and dissemination of information. Besides, there has been a phone application allowing all people to declare their health situation, and untrue health declaration will be punished.
Vietnam has also applied strong punishment for dissemination of false information, with 800 people having been punished so far.
Doctors and nurses are devoted to their work, while soldiers put aside their living area for isolation area. In particular, unlike other places, there is almost no doubt about the official number of people infected with COVID-19 in Vietnam, according to the article./.