With limited resources, Vietnam has chosen to pre-empt the COVID-19 pandemic with measures such as mass quarantines and a comprehensive search for possible infections, which has allowed it to resist with 194 infected and no deaths so far.
“To explain Vietnam’s success, three points can be highlighted: the investment made in peaceful times, the prompt activation of the response system and the way in which all society has dealt with it with strong leadership from above,” explains Park Kidong, official of the World Health Organization (WHO) in Hanoi.
The virus soon arrived in Vietnam on January 23 at the hands of two Chinese citizens and on dangerous dates: at the start of the Lunar New Year, the longest holiday of the year in which millions of Vietnamese take the opportunity to travel in and out. of the country, also visited by thousands of Chinese tourists.
By then, the country had been on guard for weeks, and in early January, when the first coronavirus infections were made public in China, it had already carried out risk assessments and created a special management committee.
As for the preparatory work “in peaceful times”, Vietnam already had an action plan in case of epidemics that saved weeks of work.
On February 2, with just six confirmed cases, the communist regime in Hanoi had already suspended flights from the most affected areas of China, canceled entry visas, quarantined hundreds of people and closed schools in almost the entire country.