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Aug 22, 2021 / 22:34

Today’s Covid News: Vietnam deploys armed forces to Ho Chi Minh City

The armed force will deliver food to residents at home, promote vaccination and enforce the shelter-in-place order.

Both military and public security forces from Hanoi have been deployed in Vietnam’s epicenter of Ho Chi Minh City and the second most affected area of Binh Duong to assist the pandemic fight.

 Policemen depart for HCMC on August 22. Photo: csgt.vn
The presence of armed forces begins after Ho Chi Minh City (HCMC) and Binh Duong impose the shelter-in-place order on August 22 and 23, respectively.

“The army including military medics are tasked with providing healthcare and treatment in quarantine centers and medical facilities and distributing essential goods to residents in their home,” Lieutenant General Ngo Minh Tien, Deputy Chief of the General Staff, the Vietnam People's Army.

Meanwhile, policemen will support local authorities in promoting vaccination in affected areas and enforcing anti-pandemic rules.

“Pushing up the application of citizen management software in hotspots and the vaccination campaign becomes the key mission”, said Lieutenant General To Van Hue from the Ministry of Public Security.

It’s estimated that about 2,000 military medics, military mobile testing labs, and ambulances from Hanoi are deployed in HCMC to assist a force of 30,000 militia in the fight against Covid-19.

On August 22, Deputy Prime Minister Vu Duc Dam flew from Hanoi to HCMC to check the preparations for the two-week restrictions there.

 Thuan An and Tan Uyen are the two most affected areas in Binh Duong. Photo: Binhduong.gov.vn
Binh Duong

Ho Chi Minh City’s neighbor of Binh Duong today reported 3,795 infections.

The province has imposed the shelter-in-place order for 15 days in the most affected areas from August.

To support residents, it will offer free-of-charge rice and food to people in 11 wards of Thuan An City and Tan Uyen Town.

The authorities will provide 720,000 residents with 5,700 tons of rice and VND540 billion (US$23.5 million). Each resident will receive eight kg of rice and VND50,000 ($2.2)/day.

On Saturday [August 21], a group of 250 mobile policemen was sent to Binh Duong to task with monitoring Covid checkpoints and check the enforcement of the stay-at-home order in the industrial park hub.

“Individuals who do not comply with regulations on pandemic prevention and control will be severely handled by the force,” said Major Col. Chu Van Khanh from the Ministry of Public Security.

So far, Binh Duong has reported 70,242 Covid-19 cases. Of the total, Thuan An has nearly 20,000 and Tan Uyen more than 18,000.

Assoc. Prof. Nguyen Lan Hieu, director of Hanoi Medical University Hospital, who is currently in charge of operating a resuscitation center for Covid-19 patients in Binh Duong, said the pandemic is at its peak as the number (5,000 on average) of people recovered higher than the new infections.

 Deputy PM works in Ho Chi Minh City on August 22. Photo: Dinh Nam/ VGP

Ho Chi Minh City and Hanoi

HCMC will promote massive testing during the restrictions, according to Deputy Health Minister Nguyen Truong Son.

He said the city will conduct testing on August 23-25 to classify the safe and risk zones in order to protect the safe zone and have proper methods for other areas in the next days.

Once the city imposes the stay-at-home order from August 23, residents will receive essential goods at home delivered by military personnel. People with financial difficulties will receive free-of-charge food packages.

Hanoi today confirmed 20 new cases, the lowest figure over the past week. The city is among 20 localities on lockdown, however, the pandemic situation remains under control.

During the partial lockdown, the city has launched different welfare package to support vulnerable groups.

Tran Dang Nam, head of the Hanoi Young Entrepreneur Association, said they have joined hands in different charity campaigns, including free-of-charge meals to those in need.

Meanwhile, it is accelerating the vaccination drive.

Today, Vietnam recorded another day with Covid-19 infections surpass 11,000 with the majority in Ho Chi Minh City and Binh Duong. The death toll rose to 8,277, including 733 yesterday and today.

So far, 44% of the total 348,059 have recovered. As of August 22, more than 17.06 million doses of vaccine have been administered, with 1.79 million people given two shots.

 Vietnam's coronavirus infections. Source: MoH. Chart: Minh Vu