Mar 30, 2020 / 16:21

Hanoi, HCM City asked to get ready for lockdown scenario

The Hanoitimes - Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City top the country's localities for the number of coronavirus cases and have several virus hot spots.

Vietnam’s Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc has asked Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City to make plans for Covid-19 prevention and control, including “putting the entire city under lockdown”.

 Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc at an online meeting with leaders of five big cities.

The PM made the request at an online meeting on Sunday with leaders of five big cities namely Hanoi, HCM City, Haiphong, Danang, and Can Tho.

He asked Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City to prepare resources, especially food for all circumstances if the pandemic spreads wider.

Warning that Vietnam has entered a new intense period of the fight against Covid-19, the PM asked the localities to get ready to deal with the pandemic on a larger scale as well as run against the clock to carry out defined measures.

As of March 29, Hanoi confirmed 71 cases while Ho Chi Minh City reported 45.

In February, Vietnam blocked a commune of 10,000 residents in the northern province of Vinh Phuc after five people in the community tested positive for the coronavirus.

Hanoi’s proposed measures

Speaking at the meeting on March 29, Chairman of the Hanoi People’s Committee Nguyen Duc Chung proposed the government close a number of administrative agencies in Hanoi and some other localities.

He also requested the government to ban people from leaving the city to outer provinces to slow the virus spread.

Hanoi should be allowed to announce coronavirus-infected cases after the affirmation of Hanoi’s Centers for Diseases Prevention and Control (CDC). The move will quickly enable local authorities to make decision on quarantine of related people.

The Ministry of Health should delegate Hanoi the power to purchase health equipment, Chung said, adding that the city wants to buy more ventilators to add to its current 260 units but the supply is thin.

Ho Chi Minh City’s measures

Leaders of the southern metropolis have said that the city aims to curb its infected cases under 150 (currently 45).

In April, it will buy 110,000 test kits to soon detect the outbreaks, encircle and handle them.

Local authorities have quarantined 9,260 people at concentrated areas and asked 1,678 others to undergo self-isolation at home.

The city has prepared another 36 concentrated quarantine areas capable of providing 24,000 beds.

Meanwhile, 47 hospitals in the city are ready to receive and treat 1,000 patients at the same time.

Since March 14, the city has closed entertainment services like cinema, theater, bar, karaoke lounge, and game cafe.