COVID-19 warning raised to highest level at airports

The Civil Aviation Authority of Vietnam (CAAV) issued a directive on February 7 to raise COVID-19 prevention alert to the highest level at airports across the nation, along with intensifying urgent COVID-19 prevention and quarantine measures.

Staff at Tan Son Nhat Airport give samples for COVID-19 screening tests on February 6, 2021. (Photo: VNA)
Staff at Tan Son Nhat Airport give samples for COVID-19 screening tests on February 6, 2021. (Photo: VNA)

The CAAV ordered airport authorities, domestic airlines and other firms in the aviation industry to strictly follow prevention measures and instructions from the Prime Minister, the Ministry of Transport and the CAAV.

The CAAV asked aviation businesses and authorities to raise the COVID-19 warning status to the highest level, particularly at airports and flight control facilities.

Staff members must stay vigilant against the pandemic, and carry out prevention measures as requested by the authority, the directive said, adding both aviation staff and passengers must wear face masks properly and wash hands regularly with soap or hand sanitiser.

All domestic airlines need to require passengers to obey COVID-19 prevention rules before and during boarding, along with implementing the National Steering Committee for COVID-19 Prevention and Control’s direction on quarantine for flight crew.

Furthermore, they are asked to pen measures to handle violations of quarantine rules, and prevent the spread of virus to the community through flight crews.

Earlier, under the direction of the Ministry of Health (MoH), on the night of February 6, Ho Chi Minh City held an emergency sampling for about 1,400 employees working at Tan Son Nhat Airport. That morning, the Centre for Disease Control of Da Nang City coordinated with Da Nang International Airport to take samples for SARS-CoV-2 testing for nearly 1,300 people working at the airport.

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Staff at Tan Son Nhat Airport give samples for COVID-19 screening tests on February 6, 2021. (Photo: VNA)

On February 7, the MoH sent a written request to the local authorities across the nation, urging for the implementation of a number of measures to ensure convenient and safe circulation of goods to areas that are currently under medical blockage.

Accordingly, the ministry asking the operators of the transporting vehicles to record the transport itinerary, make a list of those they contact with and fully implementing pandemic preventive measures. The operators of vehicles leaving from a blockaded or outbreak area will be tested twice for COVID-19 (before departure and after their return).

People's Committees of provinces and cities organise the management, inspection and strict supervision of COVID-19 prevention in the transport of goods, as well as medical supervision of the vehicle operators.

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Minister of Health Nguyen Thanh Long and his entourages visit Residential Area No. 6 in Hong Ha Ward, Ha Long City.

On the same day, Minister of Health Professor, Dr. Nguyen Thanh Long visited and presented gifts to medical staff at Quang Ninh Lung Hospital (Quang Ninh Province’s Field Hospital No. 2), the Centre for Disease Control of Quang Ninh Province, and Residential Area No. 6 in Hong Ha Ward, Ha Long City, which are undergoing medical blockage.

On the occasion of the upcoming Lunar New Year (Tet) festival, Minister Long presented Tet gifts to doctors and locals, encouraging them to strictly follow regulations on COVID-19 response.

Localities recording community transmission of COVID-19 over the last few days are strengthening measures to curb the latest resurgence of the coronavirus.

According to the Hanoi Health Department, as of February 7, the capital city has basically reviewed and tested all cases returning from outbreaks in Chi Linh City (Hai Duong Province) and Quang Ninh Province, with all 17,912 cases tested, of which four were positive and the remaining 17,908 were negative.

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Medical staff taking samples for COVID-19 testing from residents living at an apartment on Lang Ha Street, Dong Da District, Hanoi. (Photo: NDO)

In order to continue strengthening effective measures to prevent the epidemic, the Hanoi Steering Committee for COVID-19 Response is requiring all local units to continue propagating and mobilising local residents to take measures to prevent and control the epidemic, while limiting travel during Tet holiday. Public transport should take full record of passenger information on intercity trips, especially passengers traveling from provinces and cities with epidemic outbreaks for tracing work.

In Dien Bien Province, after just 15 hours, the deployment of Dien Bien Phu Field Hospital was completed to serve the treatment of COVID-19 patients. The hospital is located in Dien Bien Phu City Medical Centre, with a capacity of 300 beds, and is equipped with full medical supplies, including the life-saving ECMO system transported from Hanoi-based Bach Mai Hospital. Currently, the delegation from the MoH is supporting local medical staff in expertise work, training and field surveys.

Hai Duong Province’s third field hospital was transferred to local medical forces on February 7 after nearly a week of construction, aiming to serve the treatment of patients with COVID-19. Located at Sao Do University, Chi Linh City, the hospital has 239 beds with full departments and rooms for emergency care, monitoring, testing, image diagnosis and treatment of patients.

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After a week of fast construction, the third field hospital for COVID-19 treatment was established at the Centre for Experimental Practice, Sao Do University - Campus 2, in Chi Linh City, Hai Duong Province. (Photo: NDO)

As of February 6, 69 collectives and individuals have provided Hai Duong more than VND27 billion and medical equipment and necessities to support the province in the fight against the latest outbreaks in the locale. There are many agencies, units, businesses, religious organisations and individuals that have directly donated cash and necessities to frontline forces, quarantine posts, people in concentrated medical isolation areas and households in medical blockage venues.

The Mekong Delta province of Soc Trang has implemented a range of measures to prevent COVID-19, with quarantine posts erected at gateways to and from the locality. Local authorities were asked to pause unnecessary conferences, festivals, and events with large crowds, while civil servants, officers and local people were urged to strictly comply with anti-COVID-19 measures.

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A member of Soc Trang Province’s Youth Union distributes free masks to locals while encouraging them to wear masks in public places. (Photo: NDO)