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Transport workers most impacted by COVID-19 pandemic: survey



Medical workers take samples for COVID-19 tests for workers of the Tân Sơn Nhất International Airport. In the transportation sector, the airline industry was most affected during the pandemic. — VNA/ Photo Đinh Hằng

HÀ NỘI — Among industrial sectors affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, the transportation sector has been most affected, according to the Việt Nam General Confederation of Labour (VGCL).

The VGCL recently announced the results of a survey assessing the impact of the pandemic on workers.

The survey was performed at 124 agencies and organisations with more than 115,000 employees nationwide.

The results show that during the peak of the pandemic, from April to May last year, nearly 70 per cent of Vietnamese workers had their employment status directly affected.

Specifically, 38.9 per cent were laid off or took turns with their colleagues to leave work and 26.4 per cent had temporary work stoppages.

In terms of income, 80.4 per cent of workers in the transportation sector faced a reduction in wages while the general figure for all sectors was about 50 per cent.

For the private transport group, the reduction was up to 90-100 per cent due to the inability to work as people minimised travel and public contact.

In the transportation sector, the airline industry was most affected. During peak times, all domestic and international commercial flights were stopped and almost all crew members, including pilots and flight attendants, were out of work.

The maritime industry was the lone bright spot of the transport group.

According to the Việt Nam Maritime Administration, last year, the maritime industry was also affected by the pandemic, but thanks to the relatively independent characteristics of shipping and market demand for trade, the total volume of goods through Việt Nam’s seaport system still maintained modest growth, so employees’ income was mostly stable.

Transport saw 21.3 per cent of workers cutting their social insurance contributions, the highest figure behind only workers in the service and tourism sector at 31.7 per cent.

The VGCL also said that while taking time off from work,19.7 per cent of workers in the transport sector could only stay at home to take care of their children while 11.7 per cent looked for other jobs to earn extra income.

Regarding the family’s economic and financial situation, 71.4 per cent had to thoroughly reduce their expenses, 38.1 per cent had to use savings and 13 per cent had to borrow money from relatives or banks.

Director of the Sài Gòn Railway Transport Joint-stock Company Đào Anh Tuấn told the Vietnam News Agency that the company’s Tết revenue was down 30 per cent compared to the same period last year, forcing two units of the company to narrow their production and temporarily lay off some staff.

Trần Bảo Ngọc, director of the Transportation Department under the Ministry of Transport (MoT), said that the MoT had issued a number of documents directing agencies and units to focus on solving problems and proposing to the Government solutions to solve difficulties for transport enterprises.

The Ministry of Finance advised the Government to continue implementing a support package for businesses affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, including all individuals and business households can have tax payment deadline extensions.

He said this will help businesses improve  working capital during the deferred payment period to better productivity and business. 



8 Vietnamese elementary school students receive emergency aid after taking anthelmintics



Eight fourth graders in Vietnam were given emergency aid after they took anthelmintics at their school on Friday.

Dang Phuc Tho, principal of An Nghiep Elementary School in Tuy An District, Phu Yen Province, said that a local medical center ran a program to administer the drugs to the school’s students on Friday morning.

The eight students have recovered after treatment, said Dr. Nguyen Van Tai, deputy director of the health center, said on Friday afternoon.

“After taking the anthelmintics, a few grade-four students vomited while a number of other students developed the same symptom later,” Tho said.

“We called the health center for help and they quickly took the eight students to their facility for emergency care.”

Tho added that when he came to the center to follow up on the situation, all the eight students had recovered and been allowed to return home.

About 350 out of the school’s 372 students had taken anthelmintics before the eight students began vomiting.

After the incident, the school decided not to let the remaining students take the drugs, he said.

The anthelmintics were provided by a unit of the Ministry of Health for the south-central and Central Highlands regions, said Dr. Tai.

Other students in the district had taken them during the past two days and no problems arose until the eight students vomited, the doctor said.

“We have sent the remaining 20 anthelmintics tablets to the provincial Center for Disease Control for examination, and we have temporarily suspended the anthelmintics provision program for students in the district pending the center’s conclusion,” Dr. Tai said.

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Vietnam province enforces extensive social distancing after detecting 5 local coronavirus cases



Authorities in Vietnam’s Thai Binh Province have enforced social distancing rules in all of its districts since 12:00 pm on Thursday after local health officials confirmed five cases of coronavirus infection in the community within just a few hours.

The Thai Binh Party Committee convened an urgent meeting on Thursday to address the current COVID-19 situation. 

All five cases can be linked to an infection cluster at the Dong Anh District branch of the National Hospital for Tropical Diseases, a central-level facility that treats COVID-19 patients in Hanoi.

Social distancing

The five cases were positive for the pathogen during their first tests, according to the Thai Binh Center for Disease Control (Thai Binh CDC).

They have recently visited the National Hospital for Tropical Diseases as either patients or caretakers.

Health workers in Thai Binh are scrambling to perform contact tracing and detect direct and indirect contacts of the confirmed patients.

All K-12 students in the province have been told to stay home until further notice, starting Thursday.

Since 12:00 pm on Thursday, Thai Binh has been put under a province-wide social distancing mandate, which includes a ban on public gatherings of 20 people or more, a halt to all non-essential service and businesses, as well as suspension of all cultural, sports, and entertainment activities. 

The province urged official and grassroots monitoring groups to detect threats of COVID-19 transmission early.

A sign in front of a household in Thai Binh Province that reads ‘self-isolation zone.’ Photo: Khanh Linh / Tien Phong

A sign in front of a household in Thai Binh Province reads ‘self-isolation zone.’ Photo: Khanh Linh / Tien Phong

Patients’ itinerary

According to Thai Binh CDC, the five patients have traveled to multiple destinations during the last few days.

N.T.A., 34, from Hung Dao Village of Kien Xuong District, arrived at the National Hospital for Tropical Diseases on April 21 to take care of his father, who was staying at Room 501 in the hospital’s department of infectious diseases. 

A. then boarded a bus at Hanoi’s Giap Bat Bus Station at around 5:00 pm on Tuesday to head home. 

On Wednesday morning, A. went to Thai Binh Province’s social security office to file paperwork. 

He reported himself to a local medical facility at 2:20 pm the same day after being informed about a COVID-19 case that stayed in the same hospital room as his father. 

His test result turned out positive on Thursday.

Initial contact tracing efforts detected eight direct contacts and 13 indirect contacts of A., while 14 passengers who were on the same bus from Hanoi to Thai Binh as the patient are still being inspected.

Meanwhile in Thai Thuy District, three other cases were detected, including N.T.N., 70, from Hong Dung Commune, P.T.D., 38, N.’s daughter from Thuy Quynh Commune, and C.T.V., 45, from Hong Dung Commune. 

Earlier, N. and D. were treated at the National Hospital for Tropical Disease before being transferred to the Thai Binh Lung Hospital. 

Both tested positive for COVID-19 around 4:00 pm on Thursday and are receiving treatment at Thai Binh General Hospital. 

V. also spent time at the National Hospital for Tropical Diseases before being sent to quarantine at Thai Thuy District’s medical center and received a positive test result at 5:00 pm on Thursday.

The patient is now being treated at Thai Binh General Hospital. 

The remaining case has been identified as T.T.H., 44, from Tam Quang Commune of Vu Thu District, whose husband was a patient at the National Hospital for Tropical Diseases. H. has been sent to Thai Binh General Hospital for treatment.

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Lockdown at Hanoi cancer hospital catches patients off guard



Lockdown at Hanoi cancer hospital catches patients off guard

Ten coronavirus-positive cases were detected at the Hanoi’s top public cancer hospital Friday morning, prompting all three of its campuses in Hoan Kiem and Thanh Tri Districts to be locked down starting 5:30 a.m.

Over 5,000 people in the facilities, including employees, patients and their family members were locked inside.

Among the coronavirus cases, four were patients and the rest were their family members. One of them had been treated for a month at the National Hospital for Tropical Diseases in Dong Anh District, which has also locked down earlier following its relevation as a coronavirus hotspot.

Lockdown at Hanoi cancer hospital catches patients off guard

Barricades were erected in front of the hospital’s main gate on Phung Hung Street and another gate at Chu Van An Street.

Lockdown at Hanoi cancer hospital catches patients off guard

Several family members, unaware of the lockdown order, were confused upon being stopped by the police as they tried to get inside.

Lockdown at Hanoi cancer hospital catches patients off guard

Nguyen Tich, from the north central Thanh Hoa Province, was supposed to have his blood samples taken today. But the lockdown means he was unable to enter.

Lockdown at Hanoi cancer hospital catches patients off guard

Several other patients and family members stand on a pedestrian bridge that leads to the K Hospital. Around 1,600 patients are stuck inside the locked down hospital.

Lockdown at Hanoi cancer hospital catches patients off guard

The K Hospital has announced that it would stop receiving patients except for emergency cases. The hospital receives thousands of patients every day, mainly from northern and central regions.

Lockdown at Hanoi cancer hospital catches patients off guard

At around 10 a.m., the first supplements, including food and personal items, were brought to the hospital. Chu Ngoc Anh, chairman of the municipal People’s Committee, has requested Thanh Tri District to ensure that all 5,000 people stuck inside get the necessities they need as the lockdown continues.

Lockdown at Hanoi cancer hospital catches patients off guard

Medical workers wear protective suits inside the hospital.

Lockdown at Hanoi cancer hospital catches patients off guard

At a campus of the K Hospital in Thanh Tri, about 4 km away from the other one in the same district, barricades have also been erected since early morning.

Lockdown at Hanoi cancer hospital catches patients off guard

Chu Ngoc Anh and Deputy Minister of health Tran Van Thuan visited a campus to check up on its lockdown.

Police of Thanh Tri District also erected checkpoints to prevent people from entering or exiting the lockdown areas, especially as it is near residential areas.

The K Hospital is Hanoi’s second hospital to be locked down due to coronavirus outbreaks after the National Hospital for Tropical Diseases, a frontline facility for Covid-19 fight.

Lockdown at Hanoi cancer hospital catches patients off guard

As the lockdown began close to the morning hours, traffic jams on Phung Hung Street ensued as curious passersby stopped and looked at the situation.

Vietnam is currently experiencing its fourth coronavirus wave which has seen 121 community transmission cases recorded in 15 localities since last week. Besides Hanoi’s two aforementioned hospitals, three other hospitals in the northern Vinh Phuc, Thai Binh and Lang Son provinces were also locked down due to their association with coronavirus cases.


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