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Over 2,500 under home quarantine in Ho Chi Minh City as COVID-19 precaution

Thursday, February 13, 2020, 18:28 GMT+7
Over 2,500 under home quarantine in Ho Chi Minh City as COVID-19 precaution
A quarantine area at Gia Dinh People’s Hospital in Binh Thanh District, Ho Chi Minh City. Photo: Ngoc Phuong / Tuoi Tre

Over 2,500 people who recently entered Ho Chi Minh City from areas with confirmed cases of the new coronavirus disease (COVID-19) were under home quarantine as of Wednesday, according to the municipal health department.

A total of 2,588 people have been monitored for the disease after going through immigration in the southern metropolis since the epidemic began, the department said Thursday.

Among them, 2,521 cases remained under home quarantine on Wednesday.

Thirty other people were being isolated in designated areas, while the remaining 37 cases had been released from isolation as of 8:00 pm Wednesday.

Earlier this month, Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc ordered competent authorities to quarantine all people who come from COVID-19-affected regions in China for 14 days upon their entry into Vietnam to prevent the spread of the virus.

The order applies to everyone who has traveled to any of the 31 provinces and provincial-level administrative units in China where the disease has been reported.

Those who arrive in the Southeast Asian country from the Chinese province of Hubei, the epicenter of the outbreak, are treated as infected patients and quarantined at a hospital upon arrival, according to the order.

So far, Ho Chi Minh City has confirmed three COVID-19 infections as 29 other cases have tested negative for the novel coronavirus. One patient was waiting for their test result on Wednesday evening, the health department said.

Aside from those quarantined after immigration, 44 people have been isolated in the southern metropolis for having close contact with COVID-19 patients since the epidemic began, including 15 cases already released, 18 people being isolated at quarantine camps and hospitals, and 11 people placed under home quarantine as of Wednesday evening.

Ho Chi Minh City is looking to establish a designated quarantine area in each of its 24 districts.

So far, eight of such areas have been put into operation in District 3, District 6, District 7, District 12, Thu Duc, Phu Nhuan, Go Vap, and Cu Chi.

Another 15 quarantine areas are being prepared in District 1, District 2, District 4, District 8, District 9, District 10, District 11, Tan Binh, Hoc Mon, Binh Thanh, Tan Phu, Nha Be, Binh Chanh, Can Gio, and Binh Tan.

Authorities in District 5 are still picking a site for its quarantine camp on Thursday.

Among those in quarantine in Ho Chi Minh City are 86 employees of Taiwanese-run shoemaker Pouyen Vietnam Co. Ltd. in Binh Tan District.

The employees include 79 from mainland China, six from Taiwan, and a Vietnamese national.

None of the quarantined employees had shown any symptom of illness by Wednesday, after 13 days of isolation.

The novel coronavirus disease, officially named COVID-19 by the World Health Organization (WHO) on Tuesday, has killed 1,363 people and infected over 60,100 globally since it first surfaced in the Chinese city of Wuhan in December 2019, according to the South China Morning Post.

Vietnam has so far confirmed 16 cases of the viral infection, including 13 Vietnamese, one Vietnamese American, and two Chinese.

Among them, seven have fully recovered. They were all treated for free.

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