Vietnam has suspended inbound flights from countries with new COVID-19 variants, initially Britain and South Africa, the nation’s health ministry said.
- Vietnam suspended all inbound international commercial flights in late March but the Government has been operating repatriation flights
- Some special flights carrying foreign experts and investors have been allowed to fly into Vietnam.
- All people entering the country have to spend 14 days in quarantine
A new variant first found in Britain includes a genetic mutation that could result in the virus spreading more easily between people.
“The risk for the disease to penetrate and spread in Vietnam is very high, especially from people entering from infected countries,” the nation’s health ministry said in a statement.
Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc has told authorities to work on a list of other countries that should be covered by the suspension, the ministry said, adding that he has ordered them to tighten control of quarantine facilities.
Vietnam has suspended all inbound international commercial flights since late March, but the Government has been operating repatriation flights to bring home Vietnamese citizens stuck abroad amid the pandemic.
Some special flights carrying foreign experts and investors have been allowed to fly into Vietnam.
All people entering the country have to spend 14 days in quarantine.
On Tuesday, Vietnam reported seven imported COVID-19 cases, raising the total number of infections in the country to 1,504, with 35 deaths.
Vietnam’s speedy response to the pandemic has kept its population safe and healthy.
After its first case was detected in January, flights to and from Wuhan were cancelled.
By late March, the nation’s borders were virtually shut altogether.
Testing, aggressive contact tracing and a mass multi-faceted public health campaign were quickly mobilised
The Government used a range of creative means to communicate messaging about symptoms, prevention and testing sites, including via state media outlets, social media, text messages, and famously — a viral song about the importance of handwashing.
Thailand goes into lockdown again
As Vietnam has again strengthened measures, in nearby Thailand complacency and poor planning has been blamed for that nation’s latest unexpected surge of coronavirus infections.
The Government is locking down large parts of the country, including the capital Bangkok, and considering tougher measures.
Thailand’s Government says it is tightening restrictions aimed at stopping the spread of the coronavirus as the country logged another 527 new cases.
Officials said on Tuesday that foreign migrant workers accounted for 439 of the new infections, while 82 were Thais infected locally and another six were new arrivals from abroad.
Thailand on Monday reported 745 infections, the most daily cases there since the pandemic began.
After almost no locally transmitted infections for almost half a year, Thailand in recent weeks has seen a viral resurgence first spotted in communities of foreign factory and market workers just outside Bangkok.
The Government has responded by putting in place fresh restrictions across large parts of the country, including closing schools and limiting restaurant hours.
The Government said Tuesday that it will restrict travel between provinces in so-called “red-zone” to goods, cargo and necessary travel and field hospitals were being set up in at least five hot zones.