Vietnam’s Ho Chi Minh City to enact social distancing

Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. (Photo by: Pascal Deloche/Godong/Universal Images Group via Getty Images)

Vietnam’s business hub Ho Chi Minh City will begin social distancing measures for 15 days starting from May 31 in an effort to curb the spread of Covid-19, the country’s government said on Sunday.

The city has seen a spike in cases related to a religious mission that has recorded at least 125 positive tests, accounting for most of the city’s infections, according to a government statement.

After successfully containing the virus for most of last year, Vietnam has seen a rise in infections since late April that accounts for more than half of the total 7,107 registered cases among its population of 98 million.

It still has one of the world’s lowest cases, with a total of 47 deaths so far and authorities seem determined to keep it that way.

READ | Vietnam identifies a highly contagious new coronavirus variant with strains from the UK and India

“All events that gather more than 10 people in public are banned city-wide, but the city is considering to lower the number of people to just five,” the government said.

Go Vap district, where the Revival Ekklesia Mission is located, will be under full restrictions, and people there will not be allowed to go out unnecessarily, the statement said.

State-run Vietnam News Agency (VNA) reported Ho Chi Minh City authorities would conduct Covid-19 tests city-wide with testing capacity at 100,000 samples per day.

“The city will prioritize testing high risk people first including workers in industrial parks and members of the religious mission,” VNA reported.

“Ho Chi Minh City has done 50,000 tests so far. To date there are at least 62,000 people who came into contact with infected ones,” it added.

Ho Chi Minh City on Friday shut down shops, restaurants and other services, and suspended religious activities until further notice, the city said in a statement.

People 60 or older were encouraged to stay home, it also said.




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