HÀ NỘI — Experts believe that when Hà Nội gradually moves to the "new normal" after COVID-19 outbreaks, citizens' awareness is the most important factor to prevent the pandemic from spreading again.
Hà Nội Centre for Diseases Control (CDC) on Saturday night reported 12 new cases of COVID-19, and 10 of them had come from COVID-19-affected areas.
Last Thursday, a number of activities and services in Hà Nội re-opened after the pandemic was brought under control, including buses, taxis, museums, parks, hotels and restaurants. The services had been temporarily halted for more than three months.
Khổng Minh Tuấn, deputy director of the Hà Nội CDC, told the Dân Việt newspaper that other provinces and cities across the country had gradually re-opened for the new normal situation.
The fact that Hà Nội may have new cases is something that could be predicted in advance.
"It is important that the new cases are supervised and tested immediately. It depends on people's awareness. If they use airlines, all passenger lists will be supervised. But at present, many others travel by other means and ignore medical declarations when returning to their hometown, it poses a high risk for the community," he said.
Authorities at different levels created the best conditions for citizens when not requiring them to quarantine in concentrated facilities, thus people should stay aware of self-quarantine at home and making medical declarations.
At present, Hà Nội has not seen any cases with unclear origin.
Tuấn advised people to follow guidance about quarantine at home and make medical declarations to avoid spreading the pandemic to their families and the community.
Agreeing with Tuấn, associate professor Nguyễn Huy Nga, former director of the General Department of Preventive Medicine under the Ministry of Health, told Dân Việt newspaper that the occurrence of new cases, or unvaccinated cases returning from affected areas, will pose a risk of spreading the virus if preventive measures are not well implemented.
Those could affect children or vaccinated people who have weak resistance and elderly people, leading to new outbreaks, he said.
Nga added that it would not be as critical as in HCM City and southern provinces because nearly all people in Hà Nội had received the first dose of vaccine, and 50-60 per cent of them had received the second dose.
The new normal situation would lead to new outbreaks, but would not affect the capital city's work in pandemic prevention and control, he said.
"People returning from pandemic-affected areas must strictly follow preventive measures. Violators must receive a penalty. Municipal authorities should closely supervise people coming from different areas," said Nga. — VNS
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