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Ho Chi Minh City considers reopening clubs, bars, inessential services in four levels

Ho Chi Minh City considers reopening clubs, bars, inessential services in four levels

Friday, October 29, 2021, 13:16 GMT+7
Ho Chi Minh City considers reopening clubs, bars, inessential services in four levels
A bar on Bui Vien Street in District 1, Ho Chi Minh City. Photo: Ngoc Phuong / Tuoi Tre

The Ho Chi Minh City Department of Health on Thursday submitted a set of criteria to the municipal People’s Committee that would allow for the reopening of massage parlors, clubs, bars, and karaoke shops should it be approved. 

The health department’s proposition also covered indoor and outdoor activities, online game centers, beauty salons, barbershops, street vendors, lottery ticket sellers, and other facilities determined by the district-level authorities.

Such services and activities have been closed for at least five months over COVID-19 transmission concerns.

Each service and activity must be operated within one of the following four levels in order to ensure the implementation of effective COVID-19 prevention and control measures under the government’s resolution No. 128, which adopts provisional guidelines on safe adaptation to the coronavirus pandemic.

In the first level, indoor and outdoor activities are allowed to take place without any cap on the number of participants, while street vendors and lottery ticket sellers can work without any requirements.

For other services and activities, participants must either be fully vaccinated against the coronavirus, have recovered from COVID-19, or test negative for the pathogen within 72 hours of joining in the activity.

In the second level, indoor and outdoor activities are permitted to take place at no more than 75 percent of their normal capacity, with the criteria for COVID-19 vaccination, testing, and recovery remaining the same as the first level.

The capacity limit is the same for barbershops, but decreases to 50 percent for the remaining services.

In the third level, the number of participants in indoor and outdoor activities and at barbershops will be restricted to 50 percent of their normal capacity and 25 percent for other services.

In this level, only street vendors and lottery ticket sellers who have either received two doses of COVID-19 vaccine or recovered from the disease are permitted to work.

In the fourth level, the number of participants in indoor and outdoor activities and at barbershops will be reduced to 25 percent of their normal capacity, while the remaining services will be suspended.

Ho Chi Minh City allowed sit-down food and beverage services to reopen from Thursday, following almost five months of suspension due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Since erupting in Vietnam in late April, the fourth coronavirus wave has caused over 429,000 infections and around 16,500 deaths in Ho Chi Minh City, the Ministry of Health reported on Thursday.

Nationwide, a total of 900,669 cases, including 813,963 recoveries and 21,910 deaths, have been recorded.

The country’s daily new infections fell sharply to 4,892 on Thursday from a peak of nearly 15,000 in September.

Ho Chi Minh City saw its daily new cases and fatalities drop to 1,069 and 25 on Thursday compared to 4,134 and 122 a month ago, according to the ministry’s data.

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