Authorities in Hanoi have ordered that COVID-19 tests be carried out on all people who have arrived in the capital from the northern province of Hai Duong – Vietnam’s current largest COVID-19 epicenter.
At a meeting on Wednesday, the Hanoi Department of Health asked the municipal steering committee for COVID-19 prevention and control to perform tests on all people who had arrived from Hai Duong Province between February 2 and 16.
Those individuals will also have their health conditions monitored at home.
The proposal was approved by Chu Xuan Dung , vice-chairman of the Hanoi People’s Committee.
Approximately 18,000 people have come to Hanoi from Chi Linh City in Hai Duong and COVID-19-hit areas in northern Quang Ninh Province since the beginning of January.
Four of them have been confirmed as coronavirus patients while the rest have tested negative.
About 1,517 others have arrived in the capital from Cam Giang District in Hai Duong since January 15.
Among them, 437 have tested negative for the novel coronavirus and the remainder are still waiting for results.
Relevant agencies have been tracking all arrivals from virus-hit areas across the country in order to conduct COVID-19 testing as per regulations.
According to Hoang Duc Hanh, deputy director of the Hanoi health department, the city may detect more local infections in the coming days and weeks as a large number of people return to the capital after having spent the Lunar New Year holiday in their hometowns.
Hanh also noted that many Hanoi residents are still participating in large gatherings or not wearing face masks when in public, two factors that may contribute to the virus spread.
The Hanoi administration has ordered the health sector to conduct random COVID-19 testing in high-risk areas such as industrial zones, factories, and export processing zones.
Vietnam has recorded 2,329 COVID-19 cases as of Thursday morning, with 1,580 recoveries and 35 deaths, according to the Ministry of Health.
A total of 737 local infections have been detected in 13 provinces and cities since January 27.
Among them, 557 cases have been documented in Hai Duong Province, while 35 cases have been recorded in Hanoi.