Int’l media decode Vietnam’s success in the COVID-19 fight hinh anh 1Medical workers at the National Hospital for Tropical Diseases congratulate recovered COVID-19 patients (Photo: VNA)

Hanoi (VNA) –
International media have further highlighted Vietnam’s success as a role model in containing COVID-19.

Numerous major news agencies, newspapers, portals and prestigious research institutes of Germany recently published articles trying to “decode” Vietnam’s success in battling COVID-19.

The Handelsblatt (Commerce) newspaper ran an article in April saying that the Vietnamese Government’s rapid response is the main reason for the nation’s surprising victory in the fight against the disease.

The article started with the lockdown of a commune 40km outside of Hanoi capital city when it had reported just six infections. With a decision to quarantine the entire commune with 10,000 residents in 20 days, Vietnam became the first country outside China to conduct a large-scale quarantine to prevent the disease.

The early response is now paying off for Vietnam, as on April 22, the national health authorities did not report a single new coronavirus case for the sixth consecutive day, the article said.

Key to success

Germany’s Marzahn-hellersdorf portal has run an article pointing to factors that contributed to Vietnam’s success in its battle against COVID-19, including early action, contact tracing, and communications.

Vietnam began preparations to cope with the outbreak several weeks prior to recording its first case of infection, it wrote, even when China and the World Health Organisation (WHO) had declared there was no clear evidence of human-to-human transmission.

The article mentioned Vietnam’s effective preventive measures, such as strengthening medical monitoring at border gates, airports and seaports, cancelling all flights from and to China, and suspending entry for all foreigners. All schools nationwide were requested to close.

According to Guy Thwaites, a professor of infectious diseases and director of the Oxford University Clinical Research Unit in Vietnam, the country’s quick response was key to its success in combating COVID-19.

Such moves conducted at the end of January and early February proved effective in curbing the spread of the disease, he noted.

When Hanoi-based Bach Mai Hospital became a COVID-19 hotbed, about 15,000 people were quarantined, 1,000 of whom were medical workers.

Contact tracing was the country’s unique response strategy compared to others, Thwaites added.

Data showed that among the first 270 COVID-19 cases, 43 percent were asymptomatic, which proved the effectiveness of contact tracing and quarantining. 

Int’l media decode Vietnam’s success in the COVID-19 fight hinh anh 2Some 300 citizens brought home from the Republic of Korea are quarantined in Da Nang city (Photo: VNA)

Constant information provision and communications are attributed to Vietnam’s victory in the fight against COVID-19.

The Government actively communicated with people on the disease as websites, hotlines and mobile apps were set up to provide citizens with updates and medical consultations. The Ministry of Health also frequently sent text messages to people.

A role model in tackling COVID-19

The Handelsblatt newspaper noted that Vietnam is considered by experts to be one of the few bright spots in the global fight against SARS-CoV-2.

According to the article, Regional Director of the World Health Organisation (WHO) for the Western Pacific Takeshi Kasai praised the Vietnamese Government for dealing with the virus crisis, and affirmed that the discipline of the population in the implementation of social distancing measures helped as well.

Dr John MacArthur, Thailand country director for the US Centres for Disease Control, praised Vietnam’s response, which has been made possible by “strong public health systems, the whole-of-government approach” and a huge team of “disease detectives” to carry out contact tracing.

Vietnam’s massive public information campaign on the pandemic was also hailed, notably the hand-washing song "Ghen Co Vy", which went viral globally.

Solidarity and international cooperation in fighting COVID-19

International media also lavished praise on Vietnam offering aid packages of face masks, medical equipment and protective clothing to other countries and territories.

The Vietnamese Government presented 550,000 antimicrobial face masks to the five European nations of Germany, France, Italy, Spain and the UK, along with masks and medical equipment to Cambodia, Laos, China and Japan.

In late May, Hoa Lam Vietnam Group together with GEDU International offered 100,000 medical masks, 10,000 pairs of gloves and test kits to a regional trade promotion centre of Germany’s Leipzig city.

Int’l media decode Vietnam’s success in the COVID-19 fight hinh anh 3Vietnam presents protective suits and face masks to help Lao doctors and people fight against COVID-19 (Photo: VNA)

Overseas Vietnamese also joined hands in fighting the pandemic. Many handed over handmade face masks and medical gloves to local hospitals, retirement homes, health centres and police.

In some countries, Vietnamese restaurant owners, despite economic obstacles, offered thousands of food portions free-of-charge to doctors and nurses at intensive care units.

As of June 1, Vietnam reported no new infections in the community for 46 consecutive days, said the National Steering Committee on COVID-19 Prevention and Control. The country had 188 imported cases that were quarantined upon arrival.

A total of 7,256 people who had close contacts with patients or came from pandemic-affected areas are being quarantined, including 23 at hospitals, 6,301 at concentrated facilities, and 932 in their accommodations.

Seven tested negative for the SARS-CoV-2 once while 22 others tested negative twice.

As many as 279 out of 328 confirmed patients have been given the all-clear of the virus, accounting for 85 percent./.