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Localities authorised to decide on social distancing: Minister

Localities are authorised to decide on social distancing in accordance with the Prime Minister’s directions and their real situations, ensuring pandemic prevention and control and socio-economic development, Minister of Health Nguyen Thanh Long has said.

In an interview with the Vietnam News Agency (VNA), Long said the pandemic has been basically controlled in almost all localities. However, the northern provinces of Bac Ninh and Bac Giang should work harder to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Noting that the COVID-19 situation in Bac Giang is developing complicatedly as infections are mostly workers in industrial parks, he lauded the province’s efforts in COVID-19 testing with more than 200,000 samples tested.

Meanwhile, its neighbouring province of Bac Ninh is facing a high risk, the minister said, expressing his hope that with current effective measures, Bac Ninh will well control the situation soon.

Explaining the reason why a massive social distancing has not been applied despite a rise in the number of COVID-19 infections, Long said that the policy will be applied with reasonable scales and methods to ensure the prevention of the pandemic from spreading and avoid affecting socio-economic activities of the localities and people’s lives.

It is the responsibility of local administrations to evaluate the pandemic situation in their localities to make a proper decision, he stressed.

Underscoring the significance of COVID-19 testing, Long said that this time, testing on a large scale is being carried out using more kinds of bio products for faster results.

The Ministry of Health encourages domestic producers of biological products to continue increasing their production, while boosting imports to ensure enough supply for testing, he said.

The minister affirmed that the approach to and methods of conducting COVID-19 testing have been changed to improve the capacity in the field for better pandemic prevention and control./