HCMC preparing for safe coexistence with Covid-19: Party Chief


Ho Chi Minh City (HCMC) Party Secretary Nguyen Thien Nhan affirmed in the regular online conference about Covid-19 fight yesterday that all organizations, businesses, and state units have to develop proper safety protocols to be ready for normal socio-economic activities to resume.

Party Chief Nguyen Thien Nhan delivered his speech at the teleconference about Covid-19 fight on April 20, 2020. (Photo: SGGP)

Party Chief Nguyen Thien Nhan delivered his speech at the teleconference about Covid-19 fight on April 20, 2020. (Photo: SGGP)

Prof. Dr. Nguyen Tan Binh, Director of the HCMC Department of Health reported that since April 3, there has been no new case of Covid-19 in the city.

Among the 54 announced cases (35 patients detected at immigration and 19 discovered in the community), 51 people have successfully recovered from the disease and been released from the hospital.

The other 3 are treated in the National Hospital for Tropical Diseases and Cu Chi Hospital for Acute Respiratory Diseases. Patient No.91 has normal blood pressure and temperature now, with a good control over coagulopathy and improved lung functioning. He continues to undergo ventilator and ECMO treatment.

Yesterday, one suspected case in the city was blood-tested and is waiting for the final result. The number of people quarantined in health centers is 71 while the quantity of self-isolation at home is 197.

All passengers and crew staff of the 8 international and 11 domestic flights entering HCMC were tested, along with 400 passengers in one national train.

Until April 19, 3,300 workers in many industrial parks located in the city were also tested. 3,200 of them have negative results. So far, HCMC has collected samples of 44,756 people for the standard Covid-19 detection, not the quick test.

At the moment, the Department of Health is cooperating with the departments of Education and Training, Tourism, Industry and Trade, and Transport to develop particular criteria sets for each industry and aspect to effectively ensure safety for citizens during the pandemic time and possible future epidemics.

The top priority at present is the preparation of safety criteria for students when schools resume their activities after May 3. Other sets should be ready before April 30, including those for traditional markets and supermarkets.

HCMC Party Chief Nguyen Thien Nhan congratulated the Health Department for their great cooperation with testing units to properly screen Covid-19 for people entering HCMC by air, road, and rail as well as for workers and people at high risk.

After that, he suggested HCMC People’s Committee arrange suitable quarantine areas and collaborate with the Transport Department to timely guide people who come from other nations to HCMC into these locations.

The Party Chief also asked related state units to boost the establishment process for safety criteria sets in order to finish before April 30 so that these protocols can be introduced widely in the community in May 2020.

This is to ensure the safe coexistence of HCMC with the pandemic, also known as the new normal status, where safety protocols are implemented as socio-economic activities are resumed, stressed Secretary Nhan.

Regarding regular tasks of state officers, he recommended that HCMC People’s Committee check the performance of current teleworking methods to adjust accordingly, while preparing for the day all are coming back to their workplace, with safety at the top priority.

HCMC People’s Committee was also requested to strictly observe all directions of the Prime Minister after the third shelter-in-place week completes in order to safely organize the important celebration for the 45th Anniversary of National Reunification, as the pandemic does not allow activities to happen as usual.

Therefore, the municipal authorities need to carefully consider the celebration scale and method to maintain a display of appreciation of residents in HCMC to contributions and sacrifices of soldiers and martyrs.

“This will be an event to mark that HCMC is ready with the whole nation to enter the new phase in the pandemic fight”, stated the Party Chief.

Accepting directions of Secretary Nguyen Thien Nhan, Vice Chairman of HCMC People’s Committee Le Thanh Liem asked for a safety procedure evaluation report from the People’s Committee of all districts, managers of industrial parks, export processing zones, and hi-tech parks.

He then informed that his organization has already delivered sufficient instruction to other departments and industries to develop their own safety protocols.

The Education and Training Department and the Tourism Department have completed their proposals.

“Since any restaurant or hotel relates to several aspects like health, trade, and tourism, these safety criteria sets need comprehensive evaluation”, said Vice Chairman Liem. He urged the Health Department to finish this checking as soon as possible as the service industry has witnessed an unexpected dive lately.

The set to be applied for schools and educational institutes should also be approved soon, ready for students coming back to school after May 3.

In general, from March 20 to April 20, the HCMC Committee of Vietnam Fatherland Front received cash and goods worth more than VND161.2 billion (approx. US$6.85 million) from 6,253 organizations and individuals to help poor people directly affected by Covid-19 and farmers affected by soil salinity. The money and goods, worth VND45.3 billion ($1.92 million) have been delivered to those in need and doctors, health officers, volunteers in the Covid-19 fight.

By Kieu Phong, Thanh An – Translated by Vien Hong

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