HCM City,reopening

HCM City Vice Mayor Duong Anh Duc reported that the strict social distancing campaign has brought positive effects. The traffic capacity decreased by 90 percent during the campaign.

When more people were allowed to join traffic to serve people’s essential needs, the number of vehicles in traffic increased, but were still under strict control.

Districts and Thu Duc City have grasped the Prime Minister and municipal authorities’ instructions and built ‘every ward, commune and town, every agency, factory and enterprise into a fortress’, and turned ‘every citizen into a soldier’ in the fight against the pandemic.

The reinforcements (army, police and medical staff) and the city’s force have been deployed quickly so as to ensure the success of the anti-pandemic measures.

HCM City has gathered strength on measures to control red zones and expand green zones in association with the self-governing ‘green zone protection’ movement.

Self-administered tests

Since August 23, the city has been running a large-scale testing campaign. Five sampling rounds have been implemented, depending on the risk levels of areas.

More than 1,500 sampling teams with 13,800 workers have been used. Each team can take 300-400 samples a day.

The city allows residents to test themselves under the guidance and supervision of medical workers. Now most people can take samples for rapid tests.

Following the Prime Minister instruction on September 19 on enhancing large-scale testing in the city and the Ministry of Health's telegram, the municipal authorities on September 20 released a dispatch on continuing testing until September 30.

The number of positive cases discovered from testing campaigns is on the decrease in all risky areas, which shows that the screening testing campaign can effectively help discover and localize hotbeds and prevent the spread in the community.

Achievements

The city has used 9 million doses, including 6.8 million for the first shot (94 percent of people aged 18 and above) and 2.2 million second shots (30.5 percent). Of these, more than 1 million people aged over 65 and people with underlying health conditions have been vaccinated.

Districts and Thu Duc City have grasped the Prime Minister and municipal authorities’ instructions and built ‘every ward, commune and town, every agency, factory and enterprise into a fortress’, and turned ‘every citizen into a soldier’ in the fight against the pandemic.

The vaccination has been organized under different modes, at different places, including concentrated immunization centers, local medical units or at home.

 

The vaccination management system has been upgraded and vaccination data have been entered into the national system.

Regarding treatment, the city has shifted to focusing on treatment at grassroots level and giving timely treatment to newly discovered positive cases.

At the same time, the city has organized rapid testing rounds and delivers drugs to patients; and has given psychological consultancy and advice on treatment. The measures all have helped reduce the proportion of patients with severe progression as well as the mortality rate.

This has eased overloading at concentrated quarantine facilities and field hospitals, and eased psychological trauma of patients, thus helping them recover quickly. Also, the monitoring of patients at home via Switchboard 1022 and mobile medical teams of medical schools has been strengthened.

The city has established 531 mobile medical facilities, higher than the initially planned figure of 400; and improved the coordination of the ‘treatment tower’ with three levels of care.

To date, 1.93 million welfare bags have been delivered to people in the city during social distancing, and 14,300 gifts have been presented in emergency aid. The city has spent nearly VND5.5 trillion on aid packages and is preparing for the disbursement of the third aid campaign.

Regarding goods supply, since August 23, organizations have bought essential goods for 1.8 million, satisfying 98.8 percent of households which have shopping demand.

Continuing strategies

The city continues to impose social distancing and implement measures to prevent and fight the pandemic strictly and effectively.

It will urgently review and assess the results of pandemic control in districts and Thu Duc City in accordance with the national set of criteria; and establish 22 inspection delegations to review the assessment, which will serve as the basis for determining measures to be implemented.

In the areas which have basically controlled the outbreak, the city will begin loosening social distancing, allowing people to go to market once a week; start the ‘green card’ mechanism; and allow some sectors to resume operation if they can satisfy the criteria.

Some service and production activities, including transport works, will be allowed to resume, while sport activities will be allowed in residential quarters in green zones.

It will intensify large-scale testing in areas with high risks and very high risks to isolate infection sources. At the same time, the city needs to increase vaccination coverage before loosening social distancing and reopening the economy in accordance with the roadmap.

HCM City Mayor Phan Van Mai has asked the Prime Minister to allow the city to apply specific regulations when reopening the economy. He has also asked to prioritize vaccines to HCM City and the southern key economic zone in order to obtain the expected vaccination coverage. 

Ho Van - Thu Anh

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