Covid-19 weekly update in Vietnam - Week 2, July 2021

Vietnamese citizens are in fear of the fast expansion of the fourth Coronavirus outbreak during the past week. New directives on social isolation were made in the hope of restraining this alarming situation. 

A week ago, Hanoi had new reports on an infected patient, who works as a guard at the factory SEI of electrical materials production. The man was said to have had contact with the positive cases in Bac Giang, one of the red zones in the north of Vietnam. The new infection created a new red zone in Dong Anh District, located 20km away from the center. The Centre of Diseases Control then took tests for more than 1.500 suspected F1 cases of the factory so as not to miss any patients. At this point, Hanoi ended its 8-day period of no new infections.

After that, on 9th July, new cases were detected in Thanh Xuan district (about 8-9 km away from the center of Hanoi) and Thuong Tin district (about 50km away). The patients were said to have been in contact with the red zones of Dong Anh District and Ho Chi Minh City. As a result, the capital of Hanoi now has 3 red zones with 22  F0 patients to be taken care of: Dong Anh District, Thuong tin District and Thanh Xuan District. There is a likelihood that Hanoi will start another social distancing period if more positive cases are detected in the following days.

Last week, all high school students took the national examination for university entrance. Everything was fine until one of the examination locations in Bac Giang detected a student positive for Coronavirus. This exam point then postponed all activities to make sure no students nor supervisories got cross infected. They had to delay the test until the supplementary period. Luckily, there were no reports of cross infection at this destination.

students checking body temperature before getting in exam room
Students having their body temperature check before getting in examination room

As for other provinces in the north, there are confirmations of new patients but the number stays steady and doesn’t show a sharp increase each day. According to national news, several provinces in the north such as Bac Giang, Quang Ninh, Hai Phong, etc. require a health declaration paper for all entrance cases, some even practice a quick Covid-19 test. However, some citizens still consider that these temporary measures do not show effectiveness as the symptoms are hidden and the quick test cannot always give a correct result.

The concern of all Vietnamese now lies in Ho Chi Minh city (HCMC). The city has not shown any sign of decreasing in the number of new infections every single day. In fact, there were days when the city confirmed more than 1.000 cases within only 24 hours, most of them were in quarantines. Since the local situation has degraded much more than expected, the authorities of HCMC have ordered all citizens to follow directive 16 and start a new social distancing period for 15 days, starting from 9th July. Due to the dangerous level of expansion, even the resource markets of HCMC had to stop opening. Take-away services for food, beverage, etc. are at the same time at pause to prevent any possible cross infections.
Directive 16 of Vieitnam's government
Directive 16 of the Government of Vietnam

Realising the severe circumstance in the south, more than 300 medical students from Hai Duong volunteered to fly to HCMC and support the doctors in the fight against the fourth outbreak. These students were engaged in the campaign of prevention of Covid-19 in other red zones such as Hai Duong, Bac Giang, Bac Ninh,... and were accustomed with the process. Therefore, they will be a good help for the whole city, especially when Ho Chi Minh is under high pressure. While executing the new directives passed by the government and local authorities, Vietnam was also looking forward to new vaccination periods. According to journals, about 97.000 doses of Pfizer vaccine have been imported in Vietnam. More citizens will soon be injected with the first shot to strengthen their immune system.

Over the past week, the Ministry of Health has summed up the statistics concerning the pandemic:
Summerize of Vietnam's pandemic statistics

Since the pandemic is showing any positive development, travelling in Vietnam is bound to be held back as long as it needs. Speaking of the subject, the Director General of Vietnam National Administration of Tourism foresees 2 possibilities and new obstacles for Vietnam’s tourism from now until 2030.

The first one, with a more positive perspective towards the pandemic situation in the following few months. He expects that the pandemic will be under control globally after the third trimester of 2021 and the travelling situation will get back on the track of development. If this can come to reality, Vietnam might just consider welcoming foreigners from around the world, of course, after having stabilized domestic tourism.

The second vision, he foresees a more complicated scene where the world has not yet managed a way out of the Coronavirus. The world will continue suffering from Covid-19 expansion and will be severely affected by the virus attack. In this case, the government will proceed with all safety regulations for Covid-19 prevention. Neither foreign tourists nor domestic travellers will be likely to stall for another year.

In order to help Vietnam tourism develop once more, it will require more efforts. Specifically:
 - 1st: To stabilize and to push domestic market, to continue supporting tourism entreprises during as well as after the pandemic;
 - 2nd: To continue investing and completing the facilities utilized for tourism, to develop a variety of travel services and products;
 - 3rd: To promote tourism after the pandemic
 - 4th: To restore and to develop human resources for tourism, especially high quality resources
 - 5th: To strengthen coordination and linkages of the sector
 - 6th: To construct a safe and friendly travel environment

Stay in touch with Mr Linh’s Adventures for more weekly updates on Vietnam’s pandemic situation.

* Source: VnExpress, Quan doi nhan dan, Tien phong, Vietnamnet, Bo Y Te, Tuoi tre, Tap chi cong san.

Published on 12th July, 2021
Written and designed by Khanh Le, Assistant Manager at Mr Linh’s Adventures

Previous weeks update:
- Week 1, July 2021
- Week 4. June 2021


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