Vietnam has definitely been a winner in the fight against coronavirus. It was one of the main players in the SARS outbreak in 2003, and they learned their lesson well. Thanks to government officials’ proper planning and citizens’ appropriate follow-through, this country of 95 million has has only 420 cases of the virus and zero deaths.
In fact, Vietnam was doing so well that they were the first country in Southeast Asia to increase its number of domestic flights, back in April.
Unfortunately, 3 residents in the popular tourist city of Da Nang tested positive over the weekend – a 57 year old man on Saturday, and 2 more residents on Sunday. They were the first report of community infections since April.
With this, the warning was called for all tourists to leave Da Nang, effective immediately. That means 80,000 people have to be evacuated.
Nearly all of the tourists are from other parts of Vietnam, as the country hadn’t yet opened to international travel. Still,the government says that the evacuation will take at least 4 days, with planes shuttling people on roughly 100 flights each day from Danang to nearly a dozen other Vietnamese cities.
Many of the 80,000, specifically those from the Vietnamese provinces of Bac Giang and Bac Ninh will need to quarantine for 14 days when they get home. The rest will just have to fill out health declaration forms.
With the reports of the new cases, social distancing, mask wearing and hand washing began again in Danang, and non-essential services will be closed, effective Tuesday. Other businesses will stay open, but with proper precautions put back into place. Schools will also remain open but administrators have been told to reduce class sizes.
Scientists say the strain of the 2019 Novel Coronavirus found in Danang is not one that had been seen in Vietnam before. However it had been detected in Bangladesh, Great Britain and Ireland. It appeared to be more contagious than the strains previously found in Vietnam, authorities said.
All I can say is that Vietnam does NOT play around when it comes to COVID-19.
Feature Photo: xiquinhosilva/flickr
#stayhealthy #staysafe #washyourhands #wearamask
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This post first appeared on Your Mileage May Vary