Mar 31, 2020 / 15:51

Vietnam starts nationwide isolation on April 1 over Covid-19

The Hanoitimes - The order is not lockdown yet but the government will take further steps if the pandemic spreads wider.

Vietnam will start a nationwide social isolation period on April 1 that bans mass gatherings during two weeks, aiming to slow down the spread of Covid-19 that has infected more than 200 people in the country.

 A barrier for coronavirus prevention in Hanoi. Photo: Lao Dong

Under a decree signed on March 31 by Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc, the curfew requires people to stay where they are in the same families, villages, communes, districts and cities.

People need to stay at home except for emergency cases such as going out to buy food and medicine, working at essential service facilities, and producing goods.

Any gathering of more than two people in public places will not be allowed while social distancing of two meters would be required.

Online work from home is encouraged while manufacturing facilities need to ensure safety rules, including wearing facial masks and disinfection.

Mai Tien Dung, minister and head of the Government’s Office, told VnExpress that the PM’s directive is not “a decision on lockdown but a warning”. “The government will issue tougher measures if the pandemic spreads wider," he said.