Vaccines and treatment drugs are key solutions of Vietnam to push back the Covid-19 pandemic and promote its adaptability to the new normal, said Vietnamese Spokesperson Le Thi Thu Hang as answering queries on the country’s approach on Molnupiravir, an antiviral oral pill to treat Covid-19.
|Khem beach in Phu Quoc. Photos: Phuquoc.gov.vn|
Hang was speaking at a regular press briefing in Hanoi on October 7.
She said the Vietnamese Government has switched its approach from the zero-Covid-19 strategy to safe and flexible adaptabilities to the pandemic, in which effective prevention will go along with economic recovery and development.
Hang didn't mention a detailed plan for importing the drug, however, told domestic and foreign reporters that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs would assist the Ministry of Health in accessing sources of Covid-19 treatment drugs for studies and trial use in Vietnam.
Molnupiravir is an experimental antiviral drug that acts against a range of respiratory viruses, including the novel coronavirus. Interim results announced by US pharmaceutical Merck, show that the drug halved the number of patients who ended up in hospitals due to Covid. No patient who took the drug died from the virus. Some Southeast Asia countries including Singapore, confirm their plan to import the drug.
Hang also highlighted that vaccine passports, health green cards, and digital health certification are key parts of the Government’s economic reopening plan, especially in the fields of tourism and services.
“The government has agreed on a set of criteria on the vaccine passport recognition and use, which was proposed by the MoFA. The criteria touch on the kind of vaccine that Vietnam has accepted for fully jabbed foreign travelers,” Hang said.
“Vietnam would allow entry of people who are fully inoculated with a vaccine approved by either the World Health Organization, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, European Medicines Agency, or Vietnam Ministry of Health for emergence use,” she specified.
She also revealed that Vietnam is studying and building a pilot plan to welcome fully vaccinated tourists to the country, with Phu Quoc island as the first sandbox.