Vietnam reverses quarantine extension for foreign arrivals

By Le Nga   May 5, 2021 | 03:49 pm GMT+7
Vietnam reverses quarantine extension for foreign arrivals
Vietnamese people returning from abroad are disinfected before going into a centralized quarantine facility in Dong Nai Province in 2020. Photo by VnExpress/Thai Ha.
Vietnam will continue its policy of mandatory 14-day quarantine for foreign arrivals while strengthening monitoring and post-quarantine restrictions.

The Health Ministry sent a document to local authorities Wednesday, reversing the decision to extend the quarantine period that it had announced just a day earlier.

The new decision makes adjustments to the monitoring of people during the self-quarantine period that follows centralized quarantine.

As per current protocol, people can return to normal lives after finishing the mandated quarantine period in centralized facilities and testing negative at least two times, only having to follow the general rules of wearing a mask and keeping a distance from others at work or at school.

Under the new guidelines, people will not be allowed to go out during a 14-day period following the mandated quarantining at a centralized faculty. They have to sign an undertaking that they will stay put for those two weeks at the address they've registered with the health authorities.

Besides, they will also have to give an undertaking that they will keep track of their own health and report to local health authorities as soon as they develop any Covid-19 symptoms like cough, fever, fatigue or breathing difficulty.

Seven days into the self-quarantine period, they will be tested for the novel coronavirus; and if the test is negative, they continue to stay at the same address for seven more days. In exceptional cases that they have to travel after the seven days, they have to inform the authorities.

The ministry's latest decision was made after several individuals contracted the novel coronavirus after they'd already completed the 14-day quarantine and tested negative twice.

In the past week, at least three such cases have been detected.

From the first two cases, the infection has spread in the community, with 35 cases recorded so far in five localities, including Hanoi and HCMC.

Until April 27, Vietnam had gone over a month without local transmissions.

Since then, 38 Covid-19 cases have been confirmed, 35 of them related to people who'd completed their mandatory quarantine.

On April 29, a 28-year-old man tested positive for the virus in the northern province of Ha Nam. He had returned from Japan on April 7 and been quarantined for a fortnight in the central city of Da Nang.

After returning home to Ha Nam, he had come into close contact with many people and did not follow the required Covid-19 prevention protocols. So far, at least 19 new infections have been linked to him.

On May 2, five female staff of a bar in the northern province of Vinh Phuc were confirmed to have contracted the virus after they came into close contact with five Chinese male experts.

These experts had arrived in Vietnam for work in early April and were quarantined at a hotel in the northern province of Yen Bai from April 9-23, during which they tested negative three times.

After completing their quarantine, the men began working at the Trung Bac A Company and continued to have their health monitored for 14 days at another hotel by local medical staff. However, the experts left their hotel and visited many localities in northern Vietnam from April 23 to 25 before leaving for China. Chinese authorities have since notified their Vietnamese counterparts that four of them have tested positive for the new coronavirus. The group has infected at least 15 people in Vietnam – 14 in Vinh Phuc and one in Hanoi.

 
 
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