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Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc on February 1 signed Decision No.173/QD-TTg officially announcing the outbreak of the coronavirus in Vietnam, following various nations that detected cases of infection. The decision categorises the virus as a Group A infectuous disease.
The prime minister also directed ministries, government offices, and provincial and city authorities, as well as health facilities to quickly carry out their virus prevention tasks issued by the government through Document No.79-CV/TW dated January 30, 2020; Directive No.05/CT-TTg dated January 28, 2020; and other directives by the Ministry of Health.
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Earlier on January 31, Deputy Minister of Health Do Xuan Tuyen said that under the prime minister’s directions on nCoV prevention and fight, the MoH has made a decision to establish 45 rapid response teams to battle the fatal epidemic. The ministry has also built four levels of response scenarios, while completing online connections among 22 hospitals.
It also opened the emergency response centre for public health situations from January 24 to February 24, and is likely to extend the time if necessary.
The MoH leader proposed setting up five working groups of the National Steering Committee for Coronavirus Prevention to scrutinise the issue in cities and provinces nationwide with a focus on high-risk areas.
Directing the meeting, Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc said, “We must keep calm and take all the necessary solutions to ensure people’s safety.” He asked all cities and provinces to draw up concrete schemes to deal with the virus when required.
The PM also asked the Ministry of National Defense to be ready for civil military mobilisation if necessary, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to take evacuation measures if necessary, and the Ministry of Industry and Trade to take the initiative in producing medical equipment for domestic use and export.
The PM also ordered the MoH to work with the Ministry of Justice on the readiness of a legal framework in the case of escalation, and agreed to establish a working group at the Government Office to work with the National Steering Committee for Coronavirus Prevention on monitoring related activities.
Furthermore, PM Phuc emphasised solutions such as banning travelling on tracks and self-opened crossings on the border with China; halting the move of Vietnamese labourers into China; temporarily suspending tourism tours between the two countries; and blocking flights from high-risk areas to Vietnam and vice versa.
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