HCMC – HCMC will practice stringent social distancing in accordance with the prime minister’s Directive 16 from 0 a.m. on July 9 for 15 days as the Covid-19 pandemic has been raging in the city, said municipal chairman Nguyen Thanh Phong.
At a meeting of the municipal government this afternoon, July 7, Phong said the entire administration and the people in the city had jointly employed multiple creative and comprehensive anti-pandemic measures to put the pandemic under control, the local media reported.
However, due to the complicated developments of the pandemic given the more transmissible Delta variant, the city’s high population density and its trade relations with other localities, the fight against the pandemic has not paid off.
Therefore, in order to quickly combat the pandemic, the city needs to work out more drastic measures, accept the sacrifice of short-term benefits to ensure the long-term development and increase the level of anti-pandemic measures.
Phong asked the relevant departments and agencies to direct the suspension of public transport, ride-hailing motorbike and motorbike taxi services.
The number of Covid-19 cases in HCMC has been escalating. However, the city’s resources remain sufficient, so the city expected local residents not to flock to supermarkets and traditional wet markets to buy food for stockpiling.
He called on residents to have confidence in the city’s leaders and join forces with the municipal authorities during the social distancing period.
With the strict deployment of the city’s Directive 10 and the prime minister’s Directive 16, Phong believed that the city could put the pandemic under control.
The municipal government assigned the Department of Health to prepare action plans to curb the pandemic during the social distancing period. Specifically, the city will enhance epidemiological investigations, the tracing of Covid-19 patients and those in close contact with them, the zoning of pandemic-hit areas and the testing work.
The city will establish 22 tracing teams with 10-30 members each. These teams will be overseen by district governments.
In addition, Phong required fulfilling the task of conducting five million tests across the city and improving the effectiveness of testing and Covid-19 prevention and control centers.
Regarding the 43 enterprises that have seen outbreaks among their 56,000 laborers in industrial and export processing zones and hi-tech parks, the city government ordered competent agencies to help such enterprises to concurrently quarantine their workers at their factories and maintain production activities.
The municipal government also asked for the preparation of a plan to treat 10,000-20,000 Covid-19 patients under a new model recommended by the Ministry of Health.
To date, HCMC has suspended three wholesale markets—Hoc Mon, Binh Dien and Thu Duc—and some traditional wet markets, but the city’s supply chains have been still maintained.
The municipal Department of Industry and Trade was told to increase the cargo volume at modern retail outlets, such as Saigon Co.op, Satra and Bach Hoa Xanh.
According to the HCMC Department of Health, from April 24 to July 7, the city recorded more than 8,000 locally-infected Covid-19 cases.
On May 31, the city applied social distancing measures in line with the prime minister’s Directive 15 for 15 days, while Go Vap District and Thanh Loc Ward in District 12 practice social distancing in line with Directive 16, which is stricter than Directive 15.
However, the city has ever since detected more pandemic clusters in the community. On June 14, Chairman Phong decided to extend citywide social distancing under Directive 15 for two more weeks from June 15 to 29.
On June 19, the HCMC government issued Directive 10 on tighter anti-pandemic measures.