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COVID-19: More than 240 Vietnamese citizens safely brought home from the Philippines

17:06 | 19/07/2020

As many as 241 Vietnamese citizens in the Philippines, currently Southeast Asia’s second biggest COVID-19 hotspot after Indonesia, were repatriated on a flight operated by Vietnamese budget airline Vietjet Air that touched down at Can Tho International Airport on July 18.

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covid 19 more than 240 vietnamese citizens safely brought home from the philippines
Vietnamese citizens return home from abroad. Photo: VNA

Those included children under the age of 18, pregnant women, the elderly, workers whose contracts expired, tourists stranded in the country and other extremely disadvantaged cases.

To ensure safety for the citizens and prevent the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic, VietJet strictly implemented security, safety and hygiene measures during the flight.

Right upon arrival at Can Tho International Airport in the Mekong Delta city of Can Tho, all passengers all the passengers and crew members had their health checked and taken to the Military Zone 9 Command to concentrated isolation areas in Hau Giang and Dong Thap provinces to undergo medical check-ups in line with regulations, according to VOV.

Since March 1, the Steering Committee for COVID-19 Prevention and Control under the Military Region 9 Command has received nearly 7,500 Vietnamese citizens stranded abroad by the coronavirus epidemic. All citizens after entry were arranged by the Command in order to undergo medical check-ups at concentrated isolation areas.

This was Vietnam's second repatriation flight from the Philippines. Earlier in May, the nation also brought home 190 Vietnamese citizens stranded in hard-hit country.

The number of COVID-19 cases in the Philippines surged to 65,304 after the Department of Health (DOH) reported 2,357 new cases on July 18.

The DOH said that the number of recoveries further rose to 22,067 after 321 more patients have survived the disease.

The death toll also increased to 1,773 after 113 more patients have succumbed to the viral disease, the DOH said.

COVID-19 cases in Metro Manila, the epicenter of the outbreak, have continued to surge in the past days, with 1,824 new cases reported on Saturday.

The Philippines already has more than 8,300 quarantine centres with over 73,000 beds. The average utilisation rate is 32 per cent, AFP cited health department figures.

After imposing one of the world's longest lockdowns, the Philippines has been easing restrictions in recent weeks, fuelling a surge in new infections.

In accordance with Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc’s directions, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Transport and other Government’s agencies, Vietnam Airline will continue arranging flights to bring its citizens home depending on the COVID-19 pandemic's developments, quarantine capacity of Vietnamese localities, and the demand of Vietnamese citizens living overseas.

covid 19 more than 240 vietnamese citizens safely brought home from the philippines
Lao students are given health check and placed into quarantine. Source: VOV

The military bears the responsibility of receiving and quarantining Lao, Cambodian and Chinese students entering Vietnam via road routes.

More than 280 students from neighbouring Laos were placed into quarantine after returning to Vietnam on July 17 to continue their study.

Upon arrival in Quang Nam province, each of the students had their body temperature checked and filled in health declaration forms as part of the necessary entry procedures at the border gate.

After entering the nation, the group of students will be placed under medical surveillance at the Defence and Security Education Centre of the Quang Nam provincial Military Command in Tam Ky city.

There they will undergo a 14-day quarantine period in line with regulations regarding novel coronavirus (COVID-19) prevention measures.

After completing the quarantine period, they will continue their study.

Vietnam has reported no new infections in the community for 94 days, said the National Steering Committee for COVID-19 Prevention and Control on July 19 morning.

The total number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Vietnam remained at 382, including 242 imported cases who were put under quarantine right after their arrival in the country, posing no risk of transmission in the community.

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