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Latest Coronavirus News in Vietnam & Southeast Asia September 15



No new COVID-19 cases recorded over last 24 hours

Vietnam recorded no new COVID-19 cases overnight, with the tally standing at 1063, the National Steering Committee for COVID-19 Prevention and Control reported on September 15 morning.

Latest Coronavirus News in Vietnam & Southeast Asia September 15

Of the total, 691 were infected with the coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 domestically, including 551 linked with central Da Nang city since the latest outbreak began there on July 25.

As many as 926 patients have recovered while 35 died from complications related to the disease. Most of the fatalities were the elderly with serious underlying health conditions

Among those still under treatment, 13 have tested negative for SARS-CoV-2 once, 13 others twice and 19 thrice.

There are 33,605 people having close contact with confirmed cases or coming from pandemic-hit regions under quarantine at present.

The Health Ministry has called on residents to wear masks in public places, regularly wash hands with soap, avoid crowd gatherings, and install Bluezone app to receive infection risk alerts.

Two recovered patients in Quang Nam test positive for SARS-CoV-2

The Health Department of the central province of Quang Nam reported on September 14 that two recovered COVID-19 patients had recently tested positive for the SARS-CoV-2 novel coronavirus during self-quarantine after treatment.

They are Patients 549 and 550, both female and residing at Bao Thang Pagoda in Hoi An city’s Son Phong ward. They tested positive for the first time on August 1.

Patient 549, 55 years old, was discharged from the Quang Nam General Hospital on August 18 for 14 days of self-quarantine at the pagoda. She tested negative twice, on August 25 and 31. Her third test on September 13 was positive.

Patient 550, 75 years old, was treated at the Hue Central Hospital in neighbouring Thua Thien-Hue province and was released on August 27 for self-quarantine at Bao Thang Pagoda. She tested negative on September 3 and positive twice, on September 11 and 13.

Both women did not leave their residence or interact with anyone during quarantine. They are now quarantined at the Quang Nam General Hospital, with all people living at the pagoda being tested. The pagoda closed on August 1, so no related community transmissions have been recorded.

Da Nang removes COVID-19 checkpoints at gateways

The central city of Da Nang, the epicentre of the country’s coronavirus outbreak, has removed all checkpoints set up at its gateways after the COVID-19 outbreak was put under control.

The decision came into effect as of 12.00hrs September 14, according to an urgent telegram released by the Da Nang Municipal Department of Public Security.

Life has returned to normal in Da Nang following the containment of the SARS-CoV-2 virus. No new cases of community transmission have been detected in the city over the past days.

The removal of the checkpoints aims to facilitate economic development and human movement in Da Nang, as well as between Da Nang and other neighbouring localities.

Despite the disease being under control, the Da Nang administration has asked local police units to work closely with relevant forces to strictly manage all foreigners and Vietnamese citizens residing in the locality, promptly discover and quarantine those coming from epidemic hit areas.

The Da Nang administration had decided to establish eight checkpoints at gateways to the city since July 31 when the virus resurged in the locality. The checkpoints were designed to control, detect and prevent any people and vehicles entering or coming out of the city.

100-year-old woman enjoys full recovery from COVID-19

A further five novel coronavirus (COVID-19) patients were discharged from Quang Nam Central General Hospital on September 12 after making a successful recovery from the disease, including a 100-year-old patient.

The elderly woman had previously tested positive for the SARS-CoV-2 virus on August 1. She then began to suffer from severe pneumonia caused by complications relating to COVID-19. In addition, she had previously been diagnosed with underlying illnesses, including heart failure and respiratory failure.

After undergoing treatment at hospital for over a month, the patient responded well to treatment and went on to test negative for the virus four times, therefore meeting criteria for release.

Furthermore, an additional four other patients were also discharged from the hospital after displaying no virus symptoms such as a fever, a cough, or shortness of breath.

At present, there are 13 COVID-19 patients receiving treatment in Quang Nam province.

More than 240 Vietnamese citizens brought home from Malaysia

More than 240 Vietnamese citizens from Malaysia were flown home on September 14 on a flight of Bamboo Airlines.

More than 240 Vietnamese citizens brought home from Malaysia hinh anh 1

At Cam Ranh International Airport (Photo: VNA)

The flight was arranged by the Vietnamese authorities, the Vietnamese Embassy in Malaysia, the carrier and authorities of Malaysia.

Passengers included pregnant women, those with underlying health conditions, under-18 children, workers with expired labour contracts, and other especially disadvantaged cases.

The Vietnamese Embassy sent its staff to the airport to assist them with boarding procedures.

To prevent the spread of COVID-19, disease prevention measures were carried out during the flight. Upon landing at Cam Ranh airport in the south-central province of Khanh Hoa, the flight crew and all passengers were given heath check-ups and quarantined in line with regulations.

In the future, more flights are set to be conducted to bring Vietnamese citizens with disadvantaged circumstances, depending on their need and quarantine capacity at home./.

113 illegal Chinese migrants returned via Lao Cai int’l border gate

Vietnamese authorities and police agencies returned 113 Chinese citizens, who illegally entered and stayed in Vietnam, via the Lao Cai International Border Gate in the northern mountainous province of Lao Cai, on September 14.

The repatriation was implemented by the provincial police in coordination with the Vietnam Immigration Department under the Ministry of Public Security, Ho Chi Minh City’s police and the Lao Cai International Border Gate’s border station.

The Immigration Management Department of the HCM City’s police detected the 113 illegal Chinese migrants during inspections from July 21 – August 5.

Southeast Asian nations report hundreds of COVID-19 related deaths

The Philippines reported 259 more deaths related to SARS-CoV-2 on September 14, raising the total number of fatalities in the country to 4,630.

The Philippine Ministry of Health said the country recorded 4,699 new COVID-19 cases in the last 24 hours, bringing its tally to 265,888 – the highest in the Southeast Asian region.

On the same day, 3,141 new COVID-19 cases and 118 deaths were reported in Indonesia, making its total of infections and fatalities to 221,523 and 8,841, respectively.

Indonesia currently has so far had the highest number of COVID-19-related deaths in Southeast Asia.

Meanwhile, Singapore has begun distributing COVID-19 tracing devices to its citizens, with the aim of further improving the country’s ability in the fight against COVID-19.

The electronic device called TraceTogether will complement the same-name contact-tracking app on smartphones that the Singaporean government has encouraged people to install.

On September 9, the Singaporean Health Ministry announced that from September 17, all travellers from India who are not Singaporeans and permanent residents will have to take a COVID-19 test before departing for Singapore.

Over 360 Vietnamese citizens flown home from Singapore

More than 360 Vietnamese citizens were brought home from Singapore on a flight of Pacific Airlines on September 14.

The flight was arranged by Vietnamese authorities, the Embassy of Vietnam in Singapore and the carrier, together with competent agencies of Singapore.

The passengers included children under 18, those with underlying health conditions and those in difficult circumstances.

The Vietnamese Embassy also sent its staff to the airport to assist them with boarding procedures.

To prevent the spread of COVID-19, disease prevention measures were carried out during the flight. Upon landing at Can Tho International Airport in the Mekong Delta city of the same name, the flight crew and all passengers were given heath check-ups and quarantined in line with regulations.

In the future, more flights are set to be conducted to bring Vietnamese citizens with disadvantaged circumstances, depending on their need and quarantine capacity at home.



Vietnam jails policeman for 30 months after causing death by stray bullet



A police officer in My Tho City, located in the Mekong Delta province of Tien Giang, on Thursday afternoon was sentenced to 30 months in jail for causing a man’s death by a stray bullet while on duty last year.

The People’s Court of My Tho City handed down the sentence to Le Tran Duy Huu Hanh, former captain and scout officer of the city’s criminal police team.

The court also forced Hanh to compensate the victim’s family with VND400 million (US$17,305).

According to the indictment, major Nguyen Van Du led captain Hanh and six other scouts to the scene of a cockfight gambling den after a report of local people in My Phong Commune, My Tho City on December 29, 2019.

When major Du and captain Hanh approached the scene before the six scouts, several of the gamblers started running away.

While major Du was rushing to arrest Truong Van Hung, a 54-year-old local man, captain Hanh ran from behind, pulled out a gun labeled DUTY CZ75-07 and loaded the bullet.

The captain suddenly slipped and accidentally fired two gunshots, which fortunately hit nobody.

Hanh continued chasing the gamblers and fired three more gunshots in the air, which, this time, hit three people about 25.5 meters away from him.

Consequently, Nguyen Van Lien, a 38-year-old man among the three injured people, died at Cho Ray Hospital in Ho Chi Minh City.

The other two people, Nguyen Van Cua and Dong Quoc Tri, both 42, had to receive emergency treatment at the hospital.

The investigation into the case came to a conclusion that captain Hanh had fired three gunshots while on duty in a situation that is not allowed, prescribed in Article 23 of the law on management and use of weapons, explosives and combat gears.

Moreover, Hanh failed to perform the correct operation when shooting the gun, causing the bullet to hit Lien’s neck, leading to his death.

Hanh will spend two years and six months behind bars as per Thursday’s court decision.

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Da Nang Airport gets international heath accreditation for Covid-19 measures



Da Nang Airport gets international heath accreditation for Covid-19 measures

Passengers in face masks at Da Nang International Airport, April 2020. Photo by VnExpress/Nguyen Dong.

Da Nang Airport has been awarded the Airports Council International’s health accreditation for its safety measures against Covid-19.

The accreditation was granted on Thursday, said Giao Thong, the Transport Ministry’s news website.

It is the second airport in the country after Hanoi’s Noi Bai to receive the accreditation, a program that supports airports around the globe in introducing preventive hygiene, health and safety measures against the coronavirus pandemic.

The ACI evaluates cleaning and disinfection procedures, physical distancing, staff protection, physical layout, passenger communications, and passenger facilities for the certification, which is valid for 12 months.

When the pandemic broke out last January, Da Nang Airport and the city’s Disease Control Center disinfected the entire international terminal, set up temperature screening facilities and distributed 100,000 free masks to passengers, the airport operators told Giao Thong.

Passengers and airport staff have since been required to wear masks and use hand sanitizers.

In March, when the government imposed flight bans and travel restrictions, Da Nang Airport stopped receiving inbound international flights except for some 60 repatriation flights carrying Vietnamese citizens home.

Tan Son Nhat Airport is also being considered for the accreditation.

As of December over 185 airports around the world have got the accreditation, including Singapore’s Changi, Hong Kong and Cambodia’s Siem Reap in the Asia-Pacific.


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One-arm hairdresser follows dream job, raises two kids by herself




Lê Thị Kim Trâm, who was left with only one arm following an accident four years ago, pursues her passion as a hairdresser. — Photo Việt Dũng

Việt Dũng

HCM CITY — Despite missing an arm, Lê Thị Kim Trâm is doing an inspiring feat: making a living as a hairdresser and raising two kids by herself.

Trâm, 41, opened her own barber shop in District 2’s Thảo Điền Ward in 2007, making use of her skills that had been passed down from her family. However, in 2016 while riding her motorbike, she had an accident in which a truck crushed her left arm, leaving her with only one arm.

During her stay at the hospital, she kept thinking about how she could continue her job and thought that she might be able to do everything one-handed.

“When I returned to my job, I was lucky to have a frequent customer who allowed me to practise cutting his hair with my one arm. Before, I had been able to do a person’s hair in around seven minutes, but it took me around 50 minutes, and it didn’t even look that good,” she told Việt Nam News.

Despite her worries about her haircutting skills, the customer spread the word about Trâm, encouraging more people to visit her shop. More and more customers were supportive in helping her return to work. With time, her skills greatly improved, and now she can cut hair just as well as any other abled barbers or hairdressers.

Unfortunately, not every customer was as open-minded and generous; when customers saw her for the first time, some were nervous about letting her cut their hair, while others outright took their leave.

“But customers who are fine with me cutting their hair always return and introduce me to other people. That is a great motivator for me, and I’m really happy about it.”

Trâm’s barber shop is called Nghi Nghiêm, after the names of her two kids.

Nimble skills 

Watching Trâm work is a sight to behold: she uses her pinky and ring finger to lift a customer’s hair up in place of a comb, then uses her three remaining fingers to hold the scissors to cut the hair.

Trâm is also able to use hair trimmers and razors with ease, delicately trimming bits of hair from her customers with great precision, who are now more comfortable with letting Trâm pursue her expertise.

Most spectacularly of all, her skill of removing ear wax (a common service offered by Vietnamese barber shops) even surpasses several barbers with two functional arms.

Ear wax removal is a difficult task that requires a great deal of finesse, and even abled barbers can struggle with removing wax located deep inside customers’ ears. Trâm, on the other hand, can meticulously clean out even the tiniest bits.

Watching her work so effortlessly may make you forget that she had to go through a great deal of practice to hone her skills.

Unsurprisingly, Trâm has had to improvise after her accident: she uses her thighs to clutch certain equipment or to help her roll cotton bits onto wax removal tools or a piece of flexible plastic to flatten the customer’s ear.

Trâm even uses her leg to lean the customer’s chair back for ear wax cleaning, and she has to bend in certain ways to get a better look inside customers’ ears, which she would not have to do if she had two arms.

“At first it was really challenging, but with passion for my job and supportive customers, I am still doing my job to this day,” she said.

Nguyễn Đình Biền, a frequent customer, said that he had always found her skills to be great, and admired her determination. Even when she was practising with one arm, he still preferred her over others.


Trâm raises two kids and does everything for her family by herself. — Photo courtesy of Lê Thị Kim Trâm

Overcoming challenges

One year after her accident, her husband told her that he wanted to divorce her.

“I was devastated. I felt like I had just escaped death from my accident, so how could my husband hurt me like that? Still, I decided that it was just fate so I let him go, and began anew, using my one arm to raise my two kids.”

After the divorce, Trâm and her two children moved out and rented a place on another street in the same ward, where she set up her barber shop.

Trâm has been shouldering multiple responsibilities, from earning an income and paying school fees and rent to daily problems like her bike breaking down or her children getting sick.

“Even though I sometimes feel really bad about myself, I try my hardest to keep my cool and deal with my problems so that my kids do not have to worry about me and can focus on their education.”

Her job allows her to raise her two kids, but though she has a frequent customer base, she charges less than other barbers, so her income is not that great.

“Still, I get to do my job and my kids still have their mother, so I am happy,” she said.

Thanks to recent media coverage, more and more people have been inspired by Trâm, who is originally from Nha Trang.

“Some people have told me that they had been involved in an accident and felt really bad about themselves, but they learned from my example and decided to persevere and overcome their challenges, which filled me with joy,” Trâm said with a bright smile.

“I hope that my determination can reach more and more people, so they will love themselves more. Even if your body is disabled, your spirit does not have to be.” —


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