Central Vietnam commune erects tents to quarantine Tet returnees

By Le Hoang   January 25, 2022 | 05:44 am PT
Central Vietnam commune erects tents to quarantine Tet returnees
A series of tents are erected by authorities of Thanh Phong Commune, Thanh Hoa Province to quarantine those who returned home for the Lunar New Year. Photo by VnExpress/Lam Son
A commune in central Thanh Hoa Province has erected tents to quarantine those who returned to celebrate Tet.

Since earlier this month, authorities of Thanh Phong Commune, Nhu Xuan District have built three rows of temporary housing inside the old Quang Hung Village Cultural House and a local cultural center. They are divided into 60 rooms to quarantine those who returned for Tet, or Lunar New Year, Vietnam’s most important holiday.

The tents are made of bamboo, leaves and sheets of plastic. Each room is around five square meters, equipped with a bed, electricity and Wi-Fi. Each room is reserved for one person only.

Le Van Tuan, chairman of Thanh Phong Commune People’s Committee, said there were times all 60 rooms were occupied due to the high number of Tet returnees.

The reason the tents were erected was because most houses in the area don't have separate, isolated rooms that satisfy coronavirus quarantine criteria. Authorities have consulted with the people before erecting the tents, he said.

Since mid-January, over 300 people have returned to the commune for Tet, of whom around 200 are eligible to be home quarantined for seven days. But since their houses cannot satisfy quarantine criteria, they had to be quarantined elsewhere, including in these tents.

"During quarantine, two people were found to be infected with the coronavirus. Due to good management, the disease has not spread to the community," Tuan said.

The Thanh Phong Steering Committee for Covid-19 Prevention and Control has deployed patrol personnel among the tents to monitor quarantine zones. Meals are prepared by family members and brought here.

On Tuesday morning, Tuan said the 20 people being quarantined at the tents have been allowed to return home. Patrol personnel were also dismissed. The tents will also be dismantled in the coming days to make room for the local cultural house's activities.

"As Tet approaches, returnees need to go to the commune's medical station to medically declare themselves, and either be quarantined at proper locations or self-monitor their health at home," he said, adding that those who wish to be tested for Covid-19 may do so for free.

Until the Tet festival hits, Thanh Phong Commune is expected receive over 100 more people from other localities, according to the local Steering Committee for Covid-19 Prevention and Control.

Nguyen Duc Dong, chairman of Nhu Xuan District People’s Committee, said there has been no instruction from the district to the commune to erect tents for quarantined people, adding that he's requesting commune authorities to report on the matter and abide by coronavirus protocols as directed by the government and provincial authorities.

On Jan. 22, the Ministry of Health has requested localities to not quarantine those who return to their hometowns to celebrate Tet.

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