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Vietnam steps up Covid-19 containment as outbreak gets bigger

By Minh Nga   May 6, 2021 | 08:32 pm PT
Vietnam steps up Covid-19 containment as outbreak gets bigger
A military personnel disinfects a public area in Vinh Phuc Province, May 4, 2021. Photo by VnExpress/Ngoc Thanh.
Several localities are strengthening Covid-19 prevention measures as the nation records more community transmissions.

The central city of Da Nang has suspended on-site service at food and beverage establishments. Starting Friday, all restaurants and coffee houses will not serve customers on the premises. They can offer takeaways, instead.

City authorities have also advised residents to stick to online transactions as much as they can towards avoiding direct contact with people.

After recording five locally-transmitted cases in the latest outbreak, Da Nang had already stopped essential services including bars, dance clubs, karaoke and massage parlors, beauty salons and gyms. It has also put a hold on all cultural, art and religious activities.

Starting April 27, Vietnam has suffered a new Covid-19 outbreak in different clusters across the country. Previously, the nation had gone over a month without community transmissions of the virus.

As of Friday morning, 121 Covid-19 community transmissions had been recorded in 15 localities: the three cities of Hanoi, Da Nang, HCMC and the provinces of Ha Nam, Vinh Phuc, Hung Yen, Quang Nam, Dong Nai, Hai Duong, Yen Bai, Thai Binh, Bac Ninh, Lang Son, Quang Ngai and Thanh Hoa.

Quang Ngai, which has recorded one case, has applied social distancing across the province. It has banned gatherings of more than 20 people in general and of ten people or more outside workplaces, schools and hospitals. It also requires that a minimum distance of two meters is maintained between two people in public.

A leading tourist attraction in the province, Ly Son Island, has stopped receiving visitors.

The northern province of Bac Ninh has asked Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh to let it apply social distancing restrictions from Saturday, after registering 12 community transmissions.

With 25 cases so far, major hotspot Vinh Phuc Province in the north imposed social distancing restrictions on Vinh Yen Town, starting Friday.

Over the past two days, several localities have come up with their own measures to limit public gatherings, including social distancing and suspension of non-essential services and outdoor activities.

As of Thursday morning, 21 cities and provinces, including Hanoi, HCMC and Da Nang, have asked students to stay at home and study online. A few plan to let students return to school next week, but most have decided to maintain online learning at home until it is safe enough to resume direct classes.

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