12 high-risk localities to continue with social distancing measures for at least one week hinh anh 1Tran Duy Hung street in Hanoi is deserted during the period of social distancing (Photo: VNA)

Hanoi (VNA) - Twelve localities deemed to have high risk of COVID-19 spread, including Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City, will continue to implement social distancing measures under Directive 16 of the Prime Minister to April 22 or 30, or even longer, if infections continue to be detected.

The decision was made at a meeting on April 15 of standing Government members, the National Steering Committee for COVID-19 Prevention and Control, ministries, sectors and localities under the chair of Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc.

Besides Hanoi and HCM City, the other 10 localities with high risk are Lao Cai, Quang Ninh, Bac Ninh, Ninh Binh, Da Nang, Quang Nam, Binh Thuan, Khanh Hoa, Tay Ninh and Ha Tinh.

The classification of localities nationwide into three groups – that of high risk, risk and low risk was proposed by the steering committee and endorsed by PM Phuc.

The group with risk, comprising 15 localities, needs to put in place roadmaps for the implementation of Directive 16 and strictly carry out Directive 15 on drastic measures to contain the spread of COVID-19 such as  banning events and meetings of more than 20 people and gatherings of over 10 people outside offices, schools and hospitals.

The 15 localities in this group are Binh Duong, Can Tho, Dong Nai, Ha Nam, Hai Phong, Kien Giang, Nam Dinh, Nghe An, Thai Nguyen, Thua Thien-Hue, Soc Trang, Lang Son, An Giang, Binh Phuoc, and Dong Thap.

The low-risk group, comprising the remaining 36 localities, is required to continue following Directive 15.

The classification of those groups is not fixed and will be reviewed regularly.

The meeting also reviewed the implementation of Directive 16 and measures to continue practicing social distancing in the time ahead./.