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Vietnam beefs up preparations as thousands to return home from abroad

Vietnam beefs up preparations as thousands to return home from abroad

Monday, April 27, 2020, 17:53 GMT+7
Vietnam beefs up preparations as thousands to return home from abroad
A health worker at the Can Tho Center for Disease Control in Can Tho City, located in Vietnam's Mekong Delta, takes a sample from a Vietnamese citizen brought home from Singapore on April 24, 2020 for COVID-19 testing. Photo: T.Luy / Tuoi Tre

Authorities in Vietnam are making necessary preparations to welcome home thousands of Vietnamese citizens stranded abroad due to the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, many of whom are possible carriers of the virus.

The Civil Aviation Authority of Vietnam announced on April 21 that 13 flights would be scheduled to bring home Vietnamese citizens from Japan, the U.S., Canada, France, Russia, Spain, Singapore, Indonesia, the Philippines, Thailand, and the UAE.

Ten of the flights are operated by national carrier Vietnam Airlines, two by Vietjet Air, and one by Bamboo Airways.

Operators of Can Tho International Airport, located in the namesake city in the Mekong Delta, confirmed that the airdrome received 105 Vietnamese returning from Indonesia on Sunday afternoon.

They were all brought to a local quarantine camp following their arrival and would be tested for COVID-19.

A total of 215 citizens returning from Singapore arrived at the airport on Friday and were isolated at the same facility. All of them have tested negative for COVID-19.

On the same day, a flight carrying 300 Vietnamese from Japan landed at Van Don International Airport in the northern province of Quang Ninh.

Flights from the UAE, Canada, San Francisco in the United States, and France are scheduled for April 29, April 30, May 2, and May 5, respectively.

The exact dates of the remaining flights have yet to be confirmed since Vietnamese authorities are still working with their counterparts in these countries.

The schedule is also subject to change depending on the epidemic situation in the respective nations.

Preparing more quarantine camps

According to the Ho Chi Minh City Department of Health, the metropolis has not recorded new COVID-19 cases in the past 20 days.

To keep the epidemic under control, all passengers arriving at Tan Son Nhat International Airport from abroad have been required to take quick tests to detect suspected cases.

They also need to fill out health declaration forms before being transported to a quarantine camp.

The city currently has 22 quarantine facilities, and the municipal Center for Disease Control is working with the local military command to prepare more venues.

With such preparations, the metropolis is ready to receive a large number of arrivals from foreign countries.

Distancing inside quarantine facilities

All provinces and cities in the Mekong Delta have established quarantine camps, with a total capacity of more than 10,000 beds, of which 6,000 are managed by the military, said Colonel Phan Van Chuong, an official from the 9th Military Region.

In the upcoming time, the military will also focus on keeping a safe distance between people inside the isolation facilities, Col. Chuong stated.

Coaches with 29 seats will be used to transport people from airports to local quarantine camps, but each vehicle will only carry a maximum of 16 passengers.

In isolation areas, a large room will accommodate six people, while smaller ones will house two to three people.

All personnel in charge of transport and working at isolation facilities will wear personal protective equipment, Chuong added.

The novel coronavirus, which first emerged in the central Chinese city of Wuhan in December 2019, has infected over three million people and killed more than 207,000 globally, according to Ministry of Health statistics.

Vietnam has confirmed 270 cases so far, with 222 having recovered.

No death from the disease has been recorded in the country.

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Tuoi Tre News


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