PM requests closure of unnecessary services to prevent COVID-19
Update: Mar 24, 2020
Prime Minister Nguyễn Xuân Phúc has ordered the shutdown of unnecessary services, especially restaurants and karaoke bars, to minimise large gatherings as part of measures to prevent further spreading of COVID-19.

Prime Minister Nguyễn Xuân Phúc (centre) orders unnecessary services to be shut down to prevent further spread of COVID-19 at a meeting on Monday. — VNA/VNS Photo

He also called on places of worship not to organise events with large numbers of people at a meeting between the Government’s permanent members and the national steering committee for the fights against COVID-19 on Monday.

Việt Nam is entering the third phase of the COVID-19 fight, as risks of community spreading are high, and the next 20 – 25 days will be a big challenge to the country’s efforts in combating the disease, according to the Prime Minister. In this third phase, there will be more people in quarantine, he said.

Citing the the Ministry of Health as predicting that the outbreak will reach its peak in Việt Nam in about late April, he voiced concern about the fact that large gatherings still occur. There are also infection risks among those in quarantine centres.

Requesting stronger actions, PM Phúc ordered close control of exit and entry by road, railway and air be continued, concentrated quarantine pushed ahead regardless of how much it costs the State, self-quarantine ensured in line with regulations, and guaranteed safety for medical workers and other staff engaging in the work.

He stressed that the next 20 – 25 days will be a big challenge to the fight in the country, so concerted and stronger measures must be taken.

The leader appreciated moves by all-level authorities, sectors and the whole political system, considering the unanimity, joint efforts, seriousness and robustness, particularly the coordination from the public, as critically important to the fight.

Regarding air transportation, he assigned the Ministry of Transport to take effective measures, even banning flights to Việt Nam if necessary, while closely controlling domestic flights as well as rail and road transport to prevent spread of the virus.

He also told the Ministry of Health to promptly purchase quick test kits and carry out rapid testing at quarantine centres and in the community to screen infected people and minimise infection risks.

As of March 23, the number of COVID-19 patients in Việt Nam had reached 123, 17 of whom have recovered.