Organising COVID-19 vaccination regardless of nationality

Saturday, 2021-09-11 15:06:34
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A medical worker provides information on the vaccine to an official of a foreign non-governmental organisation at the injection session on July 13 (Photo: Central Lung Hospital).
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NDO - With the policy of “leaving no one behind” and the spirit of international solidarity, regardless of country or ethnicity, thousands of foreigners living in Vietnam have been vaccinated against COVID-19.

Equality in vaccination

Amid the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Vietnamese Government has always paid attention to and supported foreigners in Vietnam to ensure their normal activities as well as their access to medical care and intensive treatment if needed.

During the outbreaks of the COVID-19 pandemic, many positive patients have been foreigners who were cured in Vietnam and returned to their homelands safely after treatment, bringing with them a positive impression of a sincere and caring Vietnam.

In the process of vaccination against COVID-19, foreigners living in Vietnam also enjoy the same policies as Vietnamese citizens.

The Prime Minister issued a dispatch on September 6 stating that localities need to continue the organisation of free COVID-19 vaccinations for foreigners in their localities just like Vietnamese citizens, ensuring equal access to vaccines, regardless of nationality and form of residence and employment.

Earlier, at a press conference on June 24, Spokesperson from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Le Thu Hang conveyed the message of the Vietnamese Party and State to the international community that “Vietnam does not discriminate between Vietnamese citizens and foreign citizens living in Vietnam in the process of health care as well as vaccination. Foreign citizens will be given favourable conditions for vaccination when Vietnam receives more COVID-19 vaccines.”

As a unit assigned by the Ministry of Health to organise vaccinations for embassies, United Nations organisations, diplomatic missions, and foreigners in Hanoi, the Central Lung Hospital has conducted vaccination for more than 4,000 officials and employees of embassies, 4,251 foreigners, nearly 2,000 United Nations officials and employees and nearly 340 employees of non-governmental organisations in Hanoi.


Officials and employees of foreign non-governmental organisations perform vaccination procedures at the Central Lung Hospital on July 13 (Photo: Central Lung Hospital)

According to Assoc. Prof. Dr. Nguyen Viet Nhung, Director of the Central Lung Hospital, the injection sessions are carried out according to international standards, ensuring distancing and complying with the pandemic prevention rules of the Ministry of Health. “The deployment of vaccination is very welcomed by international friends,” Nhung noted.

Sharing with a reporter of the Nhan Dan Newspaper on September 9, a representative of the Indian Embassy said that the embassy's diplomats have been fully vaccinated with the enthusiastic help of the Vietnamese Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Central Lung Hospital through 2 injections in June and August.

The Embassy of Angola also lauded the effective coordination of the Vietnamese side in COVID-19 vaccination for its diplomats as well as the timely support of the local authorities where Angolan experts are working.


Officials at diplomatic missions are screened before vaccination at an injection session on June 10 (Photo: Central Lung Hospital)

Vaccine information provided to staff of a diplomatic mission before vaccination at an injection session on June 10 (Photo: Central Lung Hospital)

In July, the French Embassy in Hanoi and the French Consulate General in Ho Chi Minh City also cooperated with the Vietnam - France Hospital to organise a COVID-19 vaccination campaign for thousands of French citizens and Vietnamese employees working for the French diplomatic network in Vietnam as well as their family members.

The implementation of COVID-19 vaccination for foreigners in Vietnam demonstrates Vietnam's care for foreigners, helping them feel secure to work and contribute to the development of bilateral relations.


A diplomat is vaccinated against COVID-19 at the Central Lung Hospital. (Photo: Central Lung Hospital)

Efforts to organise vaccination according to capacity

In Ho Chi Minh City, where the COVID-19 pandemic is still complicated and where a lot of foreigners live, the city government has actively implemented many support measures, especially timely vaccination for foreigners within the limits of local capacity and resources.

According to Vice Chairman of Ho Chi Minh City People's Committee Duong Anh Duc, vaccination for foreigners is to protect their health and also the health of all people living and working in Ho Chi Minh City. The municipal People's Committee has assigned the Department of Health to allocate vaccine resources and organise vaccination for foreigners as soon as possible.

In early August, District 7 announced the organisation of vaccination for nearly 18,000 foreigners with 106 different nationalities in the district once they are eligible for vaccination according to the guidance of the Ministry of Health.


The announcement of vaccination for foreigners issued by Thao Dien ward (Photo: thaodien.gov.vn)

In Thao Dien ward in Thu Duc city, the local government also sent vaccination notices to each foreigner while arranging interpreters to support vaccination for citizens of other countries.

After receiving her first dose of COVID-19 vaccine, Laura, a Spanish citizen, said that it took about 30 minutes from queuing to being injected while guides provided very detailed and specific instructions, so vaccination was quick and easy.

In Hanoi, foreigners are also on the priority list for vaccination against COVID-19 along with those with underlying diseases, pregnant women, the elderly, and shippers.


Laura, a Spanish citizen, is vaccinated on the morning of August 10 in Thao Dien ward (Photo: hcmcpv.org.vn)

Present at the vaccination site at the Hanoi Friendship Cultural Palace on the evening of September 9 with more than 1,000 other people, John Charles Reilly and his wife Nina Ruthmccoy (American, residing at No. 3 Ha Hoi Street) said that they were very happy once they received an invitation from the local People's Committee to get vaccinated against COVID-19.

Since the end of July, the two provinces of Ha Tinh and Quang Binh have organised Vero Cell vaccine injections for 370 Chinese citizens living and working in the two provinces. Chinese nationals received the full two doses of the vaccine by mid-August.

Ninh Binh Provincial People's Committee is also implementing vaccination for Chinese citizens in the province with the allocation of 700 doses of Vero Cell vaccine by the Vietnamese Ministry of Health.


John Charles Reilly and his wife Nina Ruthmccoy (American, residing at No.3 Ha Hoi Street) have their health checked before vaccination on the evening of September 9 (Photo: DUY LINH/NDO)

The vaccination of foreign citizens is also being carried out in other localities across the country such as Hai Phong, Quang Ninh, Binh Duong and others in an effort to effectively fight against the pandemic.

NGUYEN TRANG - THIEN LAM - MINH DUY