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Oct 12, 2021 / 21:59

Vietnam witnesses a drop in new cases, fatalities

Vietnam decided to switch to flexible adaptation to Covid-19 to pursue its recovery plans.

On October 12, Vietnam confirmed 2,949 coronavirus infections and 93 deaths, both hit the lowest in almost three months.

 Vietnamese PM Pham Minh Chinh and South Korean Ambassador to Vietnam Park Noh Wan on Oct 12. Photo: VGP

The strongest decline was reported in Ho Chi Minh City with around 1,000 cases and 60 deaths.

The remaining 2,000 cases were found in 43 cities and provinces nationwide, mainly in the areas surrounding Ho Chi Minh City (HCMC) and the Mekong Delta.

It’s reported that 18 out of 62 localities underwent 14 days without community transmission. All of them are in the north.

Notably, 93% of the total 846,000 cases have recovered while the number of deaths stayed at more than 20,000.

As a result, today [Oct 12] the government issued Resolution No.128/NQ-CP with temporary regulations on “Safe and flexible adaptation and effective control over the Covid-19 pandemic.”

The move is aimed to return the country to the new normal as soon as possible.

Accordingly, the pandemic fight would be rated at four levels, namely level 1 is low-risk and labeled with green; level 2 moderate risk – yellow; level 3 high risk – orange; and level 4 very high-risk – red.

The Chargé d'Affaires, a.i. of US Embassy Hanoi, Christopher Klein talks with Dr. Dang Duc Anh, Director of the National Institute of Hygiene and Epidemiology (NIHE) on Oct 12. Photo: US Embassy in Hanoi 


Insiders have said that foreign assistance over the past time has contributed a lot to the pandemic fight in Vietnam, enabling the country to curb the spread of the virus and speed up the vaccination.

On Oct 12, the US Embassy in Hanoi handed over 77 ultra-low temperature freezers to Vietnam, the first of 111 storage units worth US$1 million that the US Department of Defense offered to the Southeast Asian country.

The freezers will be used to store Covid-19 vaccines like Pfizer and Moderna, the two kinds donated by Washington.

These freezers can reach -40C to –90C, suitable for storing vaccines that require extremely cold temperatures, including those arriving from the US on Oct 2.

The freezers will greatly improve Vietnam’s capacity and flexibility for distributing and storing Covid-19 vaccines nationwide.

In another move, one million vaccine doses donated by South Korea are scheduled to arrive in Vietnam on Oct 13, the news was released by South Korean Ambassador to Vietnam Park Noh Wan when he met Vietnam’s Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh on Oct 12.

The doses would be South Korea’s first direct donation of vaccines to a foreign nation, except for financial support through the COVAX Facility.

South Korean President Moon Jae-in unveiled the donation plan when he met Vietnamese President Nguyen Xuan Phuc on Sept 22 on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly’s 76th session in New York.

Both the South Korean president and ambassador said the Blue House will supply more vaccines and medical equipment to Vietnam.

On Oct 12, Turkey pledged to donate Vietnam 200,000 vaccine doses and medical equipment, and possible supply of its homegrown vaccine Turkovac under phase 3 trials, according to the phone conversation between Vietnamese PM Pham Minh Chinh and Turkish Vice President Fuat Oktay.

 First passengers arrive in Hanoi on Oct 11. Photo: Khanh Huy/ The Hanoi Times 
Good moves

Thanks to the initial containment of the virus and the high vaccination rate in many areas, dozens of cities and provinces planned to welcome visitors outside the localities (non-residents) from October 15.

Places in the list are HCMC’s neighbor of Ba Ria-Vung Tau, which is home to Con Dao Island, a famous tourist attraction with beautiful beaches; Quang Binh which is located UNESCO-recognized World Heritage Phong Nha-Ke Bang; Quang Ninh home to Ha Long Bay, one of the world’s natural wonders; Thanh Hoa home to well-known Sam Son beach and Pu Luong Nature Reserves; and Lam Dong that has famous Da Lat – “City of Eternal Spring.”

In early October, Hoa Binh which is famous for the emerald valley, mineral springs, and unique culture of the Muong ethnic minority; and Lao Cai home to Sa Pa with breathtaking scenery and culture of H’mong ethnic people.

Visitors are those fully inoculated and tested negative for SARS-CoV-2.

As the pandemic has been curbed, HCMC has allowed ride-hailing services with the operations of Be, Grab, and Gojek.

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