The Ministry of Health at 6pm, April 5 announced one new case of Covid-19 infection in Vietnam, raising the total number to 241.
Samples are tested by Realtime PCR (Photo: VNA)
The 20-year-old student boarded Flight VN0050 from London to Vietnam on March 21, and arrived at Can Tho airport in the Mekong Delta city of Can Tho one day later.
Upon entry, the man showed no symptoms of the COVID-19 disease and was transferred to a concentrated quarantine area in the Mekong Delta province of Bac Lieu.
He tested negative for SARS-CoV-2 that causes COVID-19 on March 25. However, on March 31, he displayed symptoms of fever and sore throat. The second test by the Pasteur Institute in Ho Chi Minh City on April 1 turned up positive.
The student is being treated at the Bac Lieu General Hospital in Bac Lieu province.
On April 5, one patient in the central province of Quang Nam was reported to fully recover, raising the number of cured patients to 91.
A 66-year-old British man, the 57th COVID-19 patient recorded in Vietnam, was discharged from a hospital in the central province of Quang Nam on April 5 after 21 days of treatment.
Dinh Dao, Director of the Quang Nam Central General Hospital, said that the hospital had followed the Health Ministry’s treatment regimen for COVID-19 patients.
The 57th patient tested negative for the SARS-CoV-2 for the two consecutive times on March 28 and April 1.
The British tourist came to Hanoi on Flight VN0054 on March 9. He travelled to Quang Nam province’s Hoi An city and tested positive for the virus and brought to the hospital on March 16.
Authorities test Ninh Bình locals who came in contact with positive patient
The hotel where the 237th COVID-19 patient stayed in Ninh Bình Province was treated with disinfectant.
The authorities in Ninh Bình have tracked and traced more than 20 people who they believe came into close contact with a COVID-19 positive Swedish man who was staying the region.
They have all been tested for coronavirus and so far, all their signs are normal.
The carrier was patient 237, a 64-year-old man from Sweden who has been in Việt Nam since December.
He stayed at Ngọc Anh Hotel at 38 Lương Văn Tuy Street in Ninh Bình Province from February 22 to March 21.
Director of Ninh Bình Centre for Disease Control (CDC) Lê Hoàng Nam said the man often went out drinking in local bars and visited a number of tourist sites during his stay.
The authority has since identified one particular bar he visited regularly and a liquor store he often shopped at.
Before leaving the province on March 21, the man also went to a dental clinic close to where he was staying.
The driver and passengers of the vehicle he travelled in have also been located and tested for the virus. Results are being analysed by Ninh Bình General Hospital.
On March 26, he was involved in a traffic accident and was sent to Việt Nam – France Hospital in an ambulance. He returned to a hotel afterwards.
On March 31, he started having a nosebleed and had an examination at Đức Giang General Hospital then was transferred to the National Institute of Haematology and Blood Transfusion.
The patient was confirmed to be infected with COVID-19 on April 1 and admitted to the National Hospital for Tropical Diseases.
In Hà Nội, 89 health workers who had close contact with the patient were quarantined and tested.
The health workers include 18 from Đức Giang Hospital, 45 of the Central Institute for Hematology and Blood Transfusion, four of Hospital E and 22 of Việt Nam – France Hospital.
The hospitals and hotel where he stayed have been disinfected.
89 medical workers quarantined after contacting a COVID-19 patient
As many as 101 people, including 89 doctors and nurses of 4 big hospitals, have been placed in quarantine after having close contact with a Swedish patient infected with the SARS-CoV-2 virus.
The male patient, 64, suffering from acute leukemia, entered Vietnam in late December 2019 and lived in Hanoi.
During his stay, he had travelled to various places of interest in Hanoi, Ninh Binh and Ho Chi Minh City, but shown no clinical and epidemiological symptoms of the coronavirus until he was admitted to the National Institute of Hematology & Blood Transfusion for treatment on April 1.
The patient was said to have changed several places of residence in Hanoi and visited other hospitals, including Vietnam-France hospital, in the capital city for medical check-ups.
At the institute, he refused to cooperate with doctors and follow health recommendations, including wearing a face mask.
Later tests by the National Institute of Hygiene and Epidemiology showed the Swedish citizen had carried the SARD-CoV-2 virus that causes the COVID-19 disease.
A total of 101 people, including 89 doctors and nurses of four hospitals in Hanoi, have been quarantined and had their samples taken by the National Institute of Hygiene and Epidemiology for testing.
Health professionals have disinfected all hotels, guesthouses and clinics where the patient had visited to prevent the virus spreading to the community.
Business firms donate food for frontline medical force
Many business firms in HCM City have donated food to front-line medical force. Photo courtesy of soha.vn
Firms in HCM City have prepared nutritious meals for front-line doctors and nurses participating in the fight against the COVID-19 epidemic.
According to a representative of GS25, Trương Thị Tuyết Mai, GS25 has offered meals to the HCM City Hospital for Tropical Diseases since March 23 and District 7 Hospital since April 1.
About 115 meals are sent to HCM City Hospital for Tropical Disease at 8pm daily, while 30 are sent to District 7 Hospital at 7.20am.
The menu is changed every day to ensure hearty yet delicious meals for the front-line medical force.
“At this time, doctors and nurses need quality food so that they have enough strength to keep up the hard work and provide the best treatment for all patients. Taking great care of doctors and nurses is not simply an act of empathy but also our responsibility,” Mai said.
Since many business firms in HCM City are doing the same meaningful action, GS25 is merely contributing a part of providing extra meals at night, according to Mai.
The quality and packaging of each meal is carefully thought out to ensure food hygiene and safety, while the delivery process follows strict standards.
“Beloved doctors and nurses just need to focus on the fight against COVID-19 epidemic. In the background, local businesses will try to take care of as many things as possible, including food and drink," Mai said.
To ensure smooth delivery of food, GS25 has increased the number of staff and plans to contact other hospitals for meal donations to the medical force.
“We believe that we can never do enough to take the best care of front-line doctors and nurses. We can only support a small part to HCM City’s medical force. There are many hard-working doctors and nurses elsewhere that risk being infected with COVID-19,” she said.
In addition to GS25, ABC Bakery, owned by Kao Siêu Lực, has produced 10,000 loaves of super-nutritious breads.
This is the company’s second batch after it donated 3,000 special loaves of bread.
Kao Huy Minh, Lực’s daughter, said that each loaf of bread contained the love of many locals.
“After seeing that my father started helping the medical force, many suppliers donated milk, yeast, white flout and black wheat. The US Embassy in Việt Nam has even provided us with some types of nuts,” she added.
Minh’s family company is in the process of waiting for hospitals’ approval to donate bread.
Even though the company is willing to help the medical force, Minh admitted that sales revenue of ABC Bakery had dropped by more than 60 per cent.
“Some suppliers have closed down so we have to find replacement materials. If we cannot find them, we have no choice but to stop making certain types of bread,” she said.
To keep the business going, Kao Siêu Lực has suspended production of many types of bread and only offered essential, easy-to-eat, delicious and affordable items.
“Everything must be calculated carefully since we do not want to waste existing resources,” Minh said.
She emphasised the importance of providing essential food to locals while ensuring employees’ stable incomes.
“What makes me happy is seeing a lot of businesses in HCM City trying very hard. Their quiet participation in social activities and food donations is only a simple part of a bigger picture,” she added.
Central provinces strengthen isolation measures against COVID-19
A donation of hand sanitiser to a check-point in Đà Nẵng.
The central city of Đà Nẵng started isolating all people coming from Hà Nội and HCM City – two COVID-19 affected hubs – for 14 days at quarantine sites starting Sunday (April 5).
The city said citizens from Hà Nội and HCM City, as well as those from Đà Nẵng working and living in the two cities, will have to pay for the two-week isolation period.
Đà Nẵng-based Đông Á college also handed over 200 bottles of hand sanitiser that were made by local students and lecturers to seven check-points in the city.
According to the city’s health department, 327 people have been quarantined as of April 5, while 4,637 had completed the 14-day isolation. Samples of 3,248 had tested negative for SARS-CoV-2.
Authorities of Hòa Vang District also fined a group of 23 people for camping at a public site and violating social distancing orders on Saturday.
Meanwhile, Quảng Nam Province warned local residents living and working in HCM City and Hà Nội to not travel home at the moment.
It said residents living in the two cities will receive food and logistical support from the province to ease difficulties during the pandemic. All people returning from the two cities will be kept at quarantine sites for 14 days as per a decision released by the province last week.
A donation of VNĐ290 million (US$12,600) and two tonnes of rice has been raised to support people from Quảng Nam staying in the two cities.
The province had isolated 498 people returning from HCM City and Hà Nội between April 1-4.
Samples of 846 out of total 1,141 (including 689 foreigners) at quarantine sites and hospitals tested negative for COVID-19. To date, 236 people have finished their isolation.
Neighbouring Thừa Thiên-Huế Province has released 360 people after quarantine.
Local donors contributed 800 gifts worth VNĐ160 million ($7,000) and eight tonnes of rice to support poor people suffering the impact of the pandemic.
A report from Quảng Ngãi Province unveiled that 74 samples of people who had close contact with COVID-19 positive cases all tested negative as of April 5.
The province is isolating 64 people.
No cases of COVID-19 have been found in the province.
Vietnam earns highest public trust in gov't response to COVID-19 globally: Survey
Covering over 32,000 respondents in 45 countries, spanning all continents, the data shows that almost half of the citizens surveyed want more government action.
With 62% of Vietnamese people saying they are happy with the government’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Vietnamese government earned the highest national public trust globally, according to a global study by Dalia Research.
Taking the second spot is Argentina with 61% of the approval rate, followed by Austria with 58%, and Singapore with 57%.
Dalia Research unveils the global public survey on the COVID-19 to understand how the world views the actions taken by national governments. Covering over 32,000 respondents in 45 countries, spanning all continents, the data shows that almost half of the citizens surveyed want more government action.
Answering the question of “Think about your government’s reaction to the COVID-19 right now. Do you believe measures taken are too much or too little?”, almost half the world (43%) say the governments are doing too little in response to the outbreak. However, citizens in eight out 45 countries surveyed believe on average that their governments are overreacting and doing ‘too much’ in response.
Meanwhile, two fifths of the global population (40%) believe their governments are doing the ‘right amount’ to combat the pandemic.
China and Italy fared well, where citizens rank their governments efforts above average to be the ‘right amount’ (56% and 49% respectively).
As the US overtakes China with most confirmed cases, 19% of the US population believe the government is doing ‘too much’ in response.
France and Spain are above the global average for considering their government response to be ‘too little’ (64% and 66% respectively).
Governments with the highest rate of “too little” in response are Thailand with 79%, Chile (76%), Spain (66%), France (64%) and Japan (64%).
On the contrary, governments with the highest rate of “too much” in response are Saudi Arabia (34%), Malaysia (26%), Egypt (25%), Morocco (25%) and the US (19%).
On the continent-level, both Europe and North America are above average as respondents here considered their governments to be doing ‘too little’ to address the COVID-19 pandemic. North America’s opinion is largely driven by Mexico (with 60% of its population saying ‘too little’). Asia, the Middle East and Africa are all below average, sharing this opinion of government under-reaction.
Community chips in to tackle COVID-19
Checking people’s temperatures at a supervision station in Hải Phòng City.
Organisations and individuals across the country have been working together to do their parts in coping with the COVID-19 pandemic.
Hải Phòng was the first locality in the country to set up six 24-hour medical supervision stations at all the city’s gateways on March 25.
In the past week, staff at these stations have been working day and night, whatever the weather.
Station No 1 has been set up at the Highway No 5 toll booth in An Dương District. Thousands of containers pass the highway every day from Hải Phòng City to different provinces and cities across the country, so work at the station is intensive.
Police and transport inspectors give guidance to vehicles while medical workers and soldiers check people’s temperatures and their medical declarations. They have no time for a break during their shifts, which last six hours.
As well as the hard work, staff need to deal with a variety of problems as they arise.
Nguyễn Thị Anh, a medical worker at Station No 1, said she had two children, one in ninth grade and the other in second grade.
She and her husband are both on duty, so their children have to look after themselves.
If any person with a high temperature passes through the station, Anh must go into quarantine to protect her family and the community.
And there are more problems.
Lieutenant Colonel Nguyễn Quang Hồng, head of Station No 1, often has to spend a lot of time explaining to people why they have to stop their vehicles for checks.
They use a number of excuses to avoid stopping and save time, such as saying they are on a charity trip.
Hồng always keeps calm, explaining the situation to people until they agree to follow the regulations.
So far Hải Phòng has had no positive cases of SARS-CoV-2 thanks to instructions from municipal leaders and the thousands of people who take turns at the supervision stations as well as in villages, wards and districts.
The Bình Minh Commune People’s Committee in Khoái Châu District, the northern province of Hưng Yên on April 2 launched a donation campaign for COVID-19 prevention and control.
Nguyễn Thị Báu, 87, from Đa Hòa Village, was praised for donating all of her allowance to the fund.
Báu donated VNĐ10 million (US$430) saying that she was that old but not healthy enough to directly join in the fight with the pandemic, so she contributed the money as her part to help eliminate the disease.
Báu’s husband passed away 10 days ago. All of her seven children live far away. She had been saving that money for many years.
Together with Báu, nine other residents in the commune contributed VNĐ57 million ($2,400) and 1,000 face masks.
In the northern province of Hải Dương, the Hải Dương City Fatherland Front Committee on April 3 only received more than VNĐ250 million ($10,800) from organisations and individuals for pandemic control work.
Phạm Nguyễn Mai An, a third grader at Võ Thị Sáu Primary School, donated VNĐ400,000 ($17) from her savings. Venerable Thích Thanh Cường, head of the Cương Xá Pagoda, said that the pagoda donated VNĐ200 million ($8,600), face masks and sterilising solution.
Nguyễn Quang Phúc, chairman of the Hải Dương Province Fatherland Front, said the province had received more than VNĐ1.5 billion ($65,200) in donations from local organisations and individuals.
The committee pledged to use the funds effectively to prevent and control COVID-19, he said.
COVID-19: Vietnam faces high risk of community infection
Epidemiologists have warned that the country is at high risk of suffering from community infection from the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) after they were unable to trace the source of the outbreak at Bach Mai hospital, the country’s largest COVID-19 hotspot.
There have been a total of 233 confirmed COVID-19 cases nationwide as of 06.00am on April 3, with 43 of them being closely linked with the ongoing outbreak at Bach Mai hospital in Hanoi.
The hospital notes that the infections were detected at its canteen, the Neurology Department, the Center for Tropical Diseases, and the National Heart Institute.
However, it remains unclear how groups of patients were exposed to the epidemic in the first place, though the Ministry of Health assumes that the sources of infection originate from logistics service providers, in addition to the relatives and caregivers of patients.
With the exception of two nurses who became the first individuals from the site to be confirmed to have contracted the disease, all of the hospital’s medical workers have since tested negative for the virus.
Most notably, the epidemiologists failed to find clues regarding the two female nurse’s source of infection, with none of the patients who came into close contact with the pair testing positive for the virus.
Experts warn that losing track of the COVID-19’s chain of transmission means the risk of infection spreading within the community is very high.
Dr. Truong Huu Khanh, Head of the Infection - Neurology Department of the Children's Hospital No1 in Ho Chi Minh City, believes that the country is now entering stage three of the epidemic with COVID-19 cases now being among the wider community.
It is therefore highly likely that many citizens will be exposed to virus infection, with many coming into close and direct with infected cases, he said.
Following the confirmation of the first positive COIVD-19 case at the site, Bach Mai hospital discharged approximately 5,000 patients and their relatives to local hospitals throughout northern and central provinces.
In an effort to halt the infection spreading among the public, localities have been scrambling to trace and quarantine patients and relatives from the hospital, along with those who they came into direct contact with.
The need to stop the potential spread of the COVID-19 has prompted the government to impose a 15-day social distancing measure which began on April 1, with all people requested to remain indoors as much as possible. One of the partial aims of the policy is to prevent healthy people from coming into direct contact with unknown COVID-19 cases.
Doctors believe that the following two to four weeks will be crucial in deciding if the nation is able to prevent and bring the epidemic under control.
If the implemented social distancing measures are followed and people strictly go along with health recommendations such as wearing face masks and frequently washing hands with soap, then there will be no possibility of the virus being transmitted from one person to another, Dr Khanh notes.
SOS village kids help in COVID-19 fight
Huế SOS village kids show their hand-made face protectors which will be donated to COVID-19 checkpoints in Thừa Thiên-Huế Province. Photo courtesy SOS Village Huế
Children from the Huế SOS Village have donated 200 hand-made face masks to checkpoints in the province.
Representatives of the village said on Sunday that it’s a part of the contribution from 70 children living in the village in sharing hardships with staff at checkpoints in the fight against COVID-19.
It’s a quick and easy-design face protector that can be made from recycled isinglass, Polyethylene foam pieces and elastic.
It can be reused after cleaning by alcohol, steam and ultraviolet (UV) sterilisation.
Kids in the village also joined a mass painting project to promote efforts made by the community in dealing with COVID-19 in the province.
According to the provincial People’s Committee, all people from other provinces visiting Huế City from Monday (April 6) have to report their travel itinerary, undergo medical checks and provide health declarations at checkpoints.
At least 14,000 people from provinces and cities nationwide had been isolated in the province since early March. Up to 4,000 have completed quarantine.
Medical staff from Đà Nẵng Trauma and Orthopaedics Hospital and private Family Hospital also produced hand-made face protectors from recycled materials at a cost of VNĐ5,000 (US$0.2) each – only five per cent in comparison to the same product sold on the market (VNĐ100,000).
Colleges and universities in Đà Nẵng also started production of automatic hand-cleaners at supermarkets and public sites.
COVID-19: Students in Australia get updated on local government’s new policies
The Vietnamese Embassy in Australia has provided updated information about the Australian government’s adjustment of its policies for foreigners amid the rapid spread of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Right after receiving information about Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s April 3 recommendation that international tourists and students who are not financially secure should leave Australia, the embassy actively contacted with local authorised offices to clarify the leader’s statement.
Accordingly, in the context of complicated developments of the pandemic, the Australian government encourages foreign backpackers to return home if they can not support themselves.
For nearly 600,000 foreign students, the government encourages them to rely on family support, part-time work where available and their own savings to sustain themselves.
Those who have lived in Australia for more than one year are advised to withdraw up to 10,000 AUD (6,000 USD) of their Australian superannuation this financial year to help them through the crisis.
The Vietnamese embassy has popularised these policies to the Vietnamese students’ association in Australia, and coordinated with the overseas Vietnamese association in the country to encourage Vietnamese people there to help them feel secure.
On April 1, Vietnamese Ambassador Ngo Huong Nam and ambassadors of other ASEAN members states sent a letter expressing wish that Australia would offer appropriate physical and material support to international students from ASEAN nations, amid the complicated developments of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The letter was sent to the Minister for Education, the Minister for Foreign Affairs, the Australia-ASEAN Joint Cooperation Committee, and the ministers for education, skills and employment of six states and two territories of Australia.
Opening the letter, the ambassadors expressed their solidarity with Australia and believed that working together, all will weather the existing difficulties.
They hoped that the Australian government, ministries and agencies concerned will consider several flexible regulations to not only meet important demands but also offer suitable measures to international students coming from the ASEAN countries after the crisis.
The ambassadors pledged to work closely with authorities, federal officials and administrations of Australian states, as well as directly contacted universities to readily provide necessary information if requested.
Binh Duong company suspended as RoK expert infected with COVID-19
A flatware and cutlery manufacturer from the Republic of Korea (RoK) based in Binh Duong province has suspended all operations after one of its Korean experts contracted the SARS-CoV-2 virus that causes the novel coronavirus (COVID-19).
Health authorities are tracing the source of COVID-19 infection of the RoK expert at a company in Binh Duong
Health professionals working in Binh Duong province stated on April 4 that they have quarantined a total of 35 people who had previously come into close contact with Lee Kyu Nam, an expert working for Sung Gwang Vina Co. Ltd. in Tan Uyen town.
Lee had originally been sent to Vietnam to work as part of the molding section of Sung Gwang Vina from January to March. However, upon returning to the RoK on April 1, it was discovered that he had been infected with the COVID-19.
According to local health officials, during his stay in the country Lee came into contact with a total of 46 people, including seven Korean nationals, an interpreter, a car driver, two chefs, and 35 other people who were part of his team.
Following the discovery, Ho Chi Minh City and a number of other southern provinces including Binh Thuan, Vinh Long, Ca Mau, Dong Nai, and Binh Phuoc have been urged to monitor 11 people, including four Koreans, that Lee came into contact with.
In addition, Binh Duong province has quarantined the remaining 35 people and has taken each of their samples for testing whilst the company’s premises has been isolated for chemical disinfection in line with regulations.
With the enterprise closing on April 2, the firm’s 760 workers will be remaining at home, with no one currently clear on when they will return to work.
“Happy At Home” campaign sees online concerts go viral
"Happy At Home” campaign sees online concerts go viral.
A large number of Vietnamese artists have participated in a series of online concerts that last the entire day as a way of encouraging citizens to stay indoors in an attempt to combat the novel coronavirus (COVID-19).
The online concerts are part of the "Happy At Home” campaign launched by the Ministry of Health in collaboration with the Vietnam Fatherland Front‘s Central Committee and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF).
The campaign delivers a positive message aimed at persuading Vietnamese people to stay at home, reminding citizens to limit the amount that they partake in social activities whilst also not gathering in crowds as a means of curbing the spread of the ongoing COVID-19 epidemic.
Since the launch of the campaign, an array of Vietnamese artists have responded by joining some of the various online concerts and sending a clear message to all viewers to please to stay indoors and enjoy the music.
In addition, the campaign also allowed a group of artists to organise an online concert specifically for doctors working at Bach Mai Hospital in Hanoi on April 1.
The show lasted for a total of two hours and involved the playing of soothing melodies and gave performers the chance to deliver words of encouragement to medical professionals.
Four more COVID-19 patients discharged from HCM City hospital
The four patients pose for a photo with doctors before leaving the hospital
Four more COVID-19 patients were released from hospital in Ho Chi Minh City on April 4 after making a full recovery, bringing the total number of discharged patients in the country so far to 90.
The four patients, treated at HCM City’s Cu Chi field hospital, had three times tested negative for the SARS-CoV-2 virus that causes the COVID-19 disease, according to Nguyen Thanh Dung, director of the hospital.
They will be placed in quarantine at home for another 14 days after being released, Dr Dung said.
One of the patient is a US citizen living in HCM City’s Binh Thanh district. She had travelled to Thailand and Turkey before landing in Vietnam on March 15 and testing positive for the virus.
The three remaining patients had travelled to coronavirus-hit countries such as the UK and France before returning to Vietnam.
Located in Cu Chi district, the field hospital has been set up to receive COVID-19 patients in HCM City and neighbouring provinces. The facility, capable of accommodating 300 patients, has so far cured 14 patients.
Vietnam has to date reported 239 COVID-19 cases, of whom 90 have been discharged from hospital.
Vietnamese communities abroad join hands in COVID-19 fight
Businessman Johnathan Hanh Nguyen donates VND25 billion to the fight against COVID-19
Vietnamese communities abroad have actively joined hands in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic in the homeland by contributing financial assistance, and medical supplies and equipment, according to Vice Chairman of the State Committee for Overseas Vietnamese Affairs Luong Thanh Nghi.
Accordingly, Vietnamese people living, studying and working in Poland, the Czech Republic and Russia donated nearly 80,000 face masks, hundreds of bottles of antiseptic, protective gears and medical gloves to help the northern province of Vinh Phuc’s Son Loi commune and hospitals in Hanoi to prevent and control the COVID-19 pandemic.
Notably, businessman Johnathan Hanh Nguyen, an overseas Vietnamese (OV) in the Philippines, donated VND25 billion. Meanwhile, Nguyen Thi Minh Hong from German presented equipment to install two negative pressure rooms for a COVID-19 treatment hospital in HCM City’s Cu Chi district. She is expected to donate equipment for 10 more similar rooms to health facilities in other localities nationwide.
Tran Ngoc Phuc, Chairman of the Vietnamese Association in Japan, Director of Metran Co. Ltd, transferred technology and helped Vietnamese partners produce ventilators at low prices.
Chairman of the Vietnamese Entrepreneurs Association in the UK Pham Minh Nam and Truong Thi Thu Huong, an OV in China, also donated VND1 billion each to the effort.
Nghi said that many Vietnamese intellectuals living abroad have proposed initiatives and technological solutions to the prevention work, adding that Vietnamese associations and individuals in France the US, and other countries have also organised fundraising activities to help people in the homeland.
While highlighting the importance of the contributions, Nghi affirmed that OVs have served as bridges to promote the friendship between Vietnam and other countries in the world, and Vietnam's extensive international integration.
Prices of medical supplies in Cambodia skyrocket
Since the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic earlier this year, many pharmacies in Cambodia have run out of medical equipment and supplies, local newspaper reported.
According to the Khmer Times, prices of such products like masks, gloves, hand sanitisers and drugs skyrocket due to novel coronavirus fears.
The Health Ministry cited earlier this week the Law on the Management of Pharmaceuticals as saying that medicine and health equipment must bear ministry registration numbers and sellers are required to have permits.
It also said medical products must be sold in pharmacies, not on online stores.
Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen earlier this week also said he will not let citizens lack hygiene products.
He said local factories must produce face masks and alcohol-based sanitisers for doctors and the public.
Meanwhile, Cambodia has waived overstay fines for tourists stranded in the country due to the ongoing disruption to flights caused by the COVID-19, according to the foreign ministry's diplomatic note released on April 4.
In the note sent to all diplomatic and consular missions accredited to Cambodia, the ministry said due to the COVID-19 outbreak, some foreign tourists who arrived in Cambodia after January 1 have not been able to return to their countries as there is no availability of flights.
"The Royal Government of Cambodia has decided, effective from April 3 2020, to grant automatic extension of tourist visa (Visa T) to those foreign citizens and to exempt their visa overstay fines until they will be able to depart Cambodia," the note said.