Ho Chi Minh City’s district tests customers, attendants for COVID-19 at drinking establishments

Ho Chi Minh City, sampling, COVID-19 testing

Health authorities in Binh Thanh District, Ho Chi Minh City conducted random sampling on customers and attendants at several drinking establishments to detect COVID-19 infection on Monday evening.

The Binh Thanh Medical Center, in collaboration with the People’s Committee and police of Ward 11, spent their night at three restaurants in the ward.

A total of 32 people were instructed by medical staff to make medical declarations and undergo sampling, according to Ward 11’s chairman Nguyen Bao Quoc.

Nguyen Viet Tuong, a diner at a restaurant on Phan Van Tri Street, was not surprised when he was selected to be tested.

“While the pandemic remains complicated, being tested like this makes me feel more secure,” Tuong said.

Ho Chi Minh City, sampling, COVID-19 testing

Medical workers make records of health declarations at a restaurant in Ward 11, Binh Thanh District, Ho Chi Minh City, February 22, 2021. Photo: Dan Thuan / Tuoi Tre

Like Tuong, Nguyen Diep Thuy, manager of the facility, showed her support for local authorities’ move.

“This [random test] helps all the staff know their health condition,” Thuy said.

“If our health is good, customers will feel more secure when they come to the restaurant."

Ho Chi Minh City, sampling, COVID-19 testing

A medical worker samples a woman at a restaurant in Ward 11, Binh Thanh District, Ho Chi Minh City, February 22, 2021. Photo: Dan Thuan / Tuoi Tre

However, some customers quickly asked to pay their bills and intended to leave the drinking places when seeing the functional forces arriving.

But all of them made medical declarations and were sampled by the functional forces before leaving.

“This sampling can help local authorities detect COVID-19 infection in the community early to promptly take measures to prevent the spread of the disease,” chairman Quoc said.

According to local authorities’ plan, the random sampling will be conducted across 20 wards in Binh Thanh District until the end of March.

Ho Chi Minh City has documented 36 local COVID-19 cases since January 28, when the Ministry of Health confirmed the first community-based infection after Vietnam had spent almost two months detecting zero locally transmissions.

A total of 803 local cases have been detected in 13 provinces and cities since then, making it the most serious wave to have struck Vietnam after the first-ever COVID-19 patient was recorded in the country on January 23, 2020.

In this latest wave, 620 cases were logged in Hai Duong Province, 60 in Quang Ninh Province, 27 in Gia Lai Province, 35 in Hanoi, five in Bac Ninh Province, two in Bac Giang Province, two in Hoa Binh Province, one in Ha Giang Province, three in Dien Bien Province, six in Binh Duong Province, four in Hai Phong, and two in Hung Yen Province.

The national tally stood at 2,395 coronavirus cases, including 1,496 local infections, as of Tuesday morning, with 1,717 recoveries and 35 virus-related deaths, according to the Ministry of Health’s data.

Ho Chi Minh City, sampling, COVID-19 testing

A medical worker samples a man at a restaurant in Ward 11, Binh Thanh District, Ho Chi Minh City, February 22, 2021. Photo: Dan Thuan / Tuoi Tre
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