Hanoi will prioritize allotting budget to buy Covid-19 vaccine for people amid the latest Covid-19 outbreak featuring a rapidly transmitting UK-originated variant.
Secretary of the Hanoi Party Committee Vuong Dinh Hue made the statement at the meeting on Covid-19 prevention in Hanoi on February 2.
Accordingly, the municipal Party chief requested Hanoi's health sector to focus on planning, allocating budgets, mobilizing all legal resources to ensure Covid-19 vaccination for all local residents. Priority will be given to people at high risk.
Secretary of the Hanoi Party Committee Vuong Dinh Hue presides over the meeting on Covid-19 prevention in Hanoi on February 2. Photo: Kinhtedothi.vn
Mr. Hue added that Hanoi should consider applying social distancing on a wider scale as the pandemic situation in the capital city has turned serious and could last longer than expected.
The municipal Party chief emphasized the city's determination to control the pandemic in the city, especially when Hanoi recorded the 21st coronavirus case in Hai Ba Trung district last night.
“Hanoi must conduct mass testing and screen all direct and indirect contacts confirmed involving in Covid-19 transmissions as quickly as possible and 21-day lockdown being enforced in all areas hard hit by the pandemic,” said Mr. Hue.
The Hanoi Center for Disease Control maintains a testing capacity of 3,000 samples per day, which can be raised to 10,000 per day if necessary.
He stressed that Hai Duong and Quang Ninh, the two pandemic epicenters, are close to Hanoi with intensive transport and trade activities with the city. Thus, all actions must be accelerated and scaled up to ensure effective prevention.
T6 building of Times City urban area in Hai Ba Trung district is locked down due to a Covid-19 infection. Photo: Trung Kien
The Hai Duong hotspot is particularly troublesome due to the presence of a coronavirus variant originating from the UK, believed to be up to 70% more contagious than ordinary strains.
"As such, Hanoi faces a high risk of detecting new community transmissions. Without good management, the capital city would become a Covid-19 hotspot," Mr. Hue said, adding authorities need to roll out preventative measures at the highest levels.
Hanoi’s prompt actions
Hanoi authorities have so far put nine areas under lockdown, including a primary school and an apartment building in Nam Tu Liem district, the FPT University in Thach That district and a military-run factory in Dong Anh district. Other areas are in Cau Giay, Hai Ba Trung and Me Linh districts.
Hanoi authorities on Monday afternoon decided to shut down video game and internet parlors in the city from Tuesday, following the shutdown of all bars, karaoke parlors, and discotheques a day earlier.
Millions of students in Hanoi have also stayed home starting February 1.