18.06.2021, 14:46

Deputy PM suggests second thought on citywide social distancing in HCMC

Deputy PM suggests second thought on citywide social distancing in HCMC

An area in District 12’s Thanh Loc Ward is locked down. Deputy Prime Minister Vu Duc Dam says large-scale social distancing in HCMC should not be extended - PHOTO: PLO

HCMC – Deputy Prime Minister Vu Duc Dam, speaking at a teleconference with HCMC on June 17, stressed that the city should not protract its citywide social distancing order as it is leaving enormous impact on the economy and society.

Dam, who is also the head of the national steering committee for Covid-19 infection prevention and control, told the city to find ways to determine Covid-19 infection clusters and their sources of infection as quickly as possible, the local media reported.

Social distancing is aimed at slowing down the spread of the coronavirus, tracing contacts, determining sources of infection and identifying affected areas. Inside Covid-19-hit areas, anti-pandemic measures must be strictly enforced to stop the virus spreading as some of these areas have been found to not seriously comply with the measures, Dam said.

For industrial parks, the deputy prime minister asked the city to maintain aggressive measures and do more testing there to detect any Covid-19 positive cases within the first three days of infection.

At the meeting, HCMC Vice Chairman Duong Anh Duc said most of the new Covid-19 cases in the city were found in areas under lockdown. At the HCMC Hospital for Tropical Diseases, no new Covid-19 cases have been detected over the past few days.

After detecting a case at the University Medical Center on June 15, all employees and patients at the hospital had tested negative.

Duc said vaccination had helped reduce the transmission risk at these hospitals. In addition, the authorities of the districts and Thu Duc City had established teams to inspect compliance with the prime minister’s Directive 15.

On June 17, the lockdown in many areas was lifted but many new areas were put on lockdown. Seven enterprises in industrial parks have reported one to two cases each.

As for the vaccination campaign, the city has received 836,000 doses and has worked out a vaccination plan and determined people who should have priority access to receive the jabs. The city has set a target to inoculate up to 200,000 people per day.

Assessing the developments of the pandemic in HCMC, Deputy Minister of Health Nguyen Truong Son said some cases without known sources of infection had been detected but these clusters could be put under control.

The city has reported more than 1,000 cases and must prepare response plans if the count exceeds 5,000. The city should make emergency and recuperation equipment available for critical cases, Son added.

The Ministry of Health has dispatched experts to HCMC to help the city combat the pandemic. They would assess the factories and propose to those meeting certain requirements to arrange for their workers to stay at the factories after work.