Vietnam’s largest Covid-19 hotspot returns to new normal from tomorrow

, Vietnam’s largest Covid-19 hotspot returns to new normal from tomorrow
  • Vietnam’s northern province of Hai Duong to return to new normal from April 1
  • Most of businesses in Hai Duong, home to many industrial parks and foreign-invested firms, have reestablished operation.
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The northern province of Hai Duong, Vietnam’s largest hotspot in the latest Covid-19 outbreak, will lift province-wide social distancing measures and embrace a new normal from April 1, the Hanoi Times reported.

This was decided by the Standing Board of the provincial Party Committee at a meeting on March 29 reviewing efforts against Covid-19.

Related: Vietnam has no new COVID-19 cases to report, Saigon forces returnees from COVID-19 hotspots into quarantine

The move came as the northern province, around 60 kilometers east of Hanoi, has successfully contained the pandemic outbreak, with many areas having recorded no community transmissions for the past 20 days.

“All lockdowns across Hai Duong have been lifted. The province will shift to a new normal in which we both drastically fight the coronavirus and take action to conduct socio-economic development tasks”, said Pham Xuan Thang, secretary of the provincial Party Committee.

From April 1, all students from kindergarten to high school levels will be allowed to resume class after more than a month staying at home as a precautionary measure against the Covid-19 pandemic.

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Restaurants, food stalls and cafes are allowed to reopen but must comply with anti-pandemic prevention measures.

However, non-essential services like entertainment venues, tourist sites, sport centers, beauty parlors, hairdressing shops, karaoke bars, massage parlors, bars, discotheques, movie theaters, game shops and gyms will remain closed until April 15.

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Hai Duong will continue to halt festivals, religious rituals, sporting events and other unimportant events that require large gatherings in public.

As of March 29, all drivers, university students and those tested for Covid-19 as part of the province’s mass screening campaign showed negative results.

Inter-provincial and intra-provincial passenger transport can resume, but anti-pandemic measures need to be ensured in line with the guidelines from the Ministry of Transport.

A total 95% of businesses in Hai Duong, home to many industrial parks and foreign-invested firms, have reestablished operation. The owners will need to sign documents with the local authorities affirming their commitment to ensuring safety.

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The secretary of the provincial Party Committee also warned of a possible resurgence of the virus, and asked the province to view fighting Covid-19 as a regular and ongoing task in the “new normal”.

Secretary Thang stressed the outbreaks could still recur if the local authorities are careless and let their guard down, and that the leaders will primarily be held accountable for the situation under their jurisdiction.

Since January 28 when community transmissions reemerged in Vietnam after almost two months, Hai Duong has reported 726 Covid-19 patients, according to the Hanoi Times.

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