Seventeen more hotels in HCMC have been designated as paid quarantine facilities, taking the total number to 25 and doubling the number of rooms available to over 2,300.
Photo: Accommodation in a resort in HCMC's largest district of Can Gio designated as a quarantine facility in March 2020.
Nguyen Tan Binh, director of the city Department of Health, said at a meeting to discuss the Covid-19 situation on Monday: "The list will continue to be expanded to meet demand."
Tourism and medical authorities have instructed the hotels to scrupulously apply Covid-19 preventive measures and not to take in regular guests.
The government in early September lifted the 14-day centralized quarantine requirement for foreign experts, investors, managers, and diplomats entering the country for less than 14 days, but still requires them to comply with all Covid-19 prevention measures including tests for Covid-19 and refraining from shaking hands.
The Transport Ministry earlier this month advised the government to resume commercial flights from Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City to Guangzhou in mainland China, Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, Laos and Cambodia. The ministry estimates the number of arrivals to be quarantined per week at about 5,000 in Hanoi and HCMC.
All international flights had been suspended on March 25.
HCMC has gone over 40 days without a new case of domestic Covid-19 transmission. All 16 patients found infected since July 25, including eight who contracted it in the community, have been discharged. The country's second outbreak wave began on July 25 after 99 days without domestic infections.
There are currently 810 people in centralized quarantine in the city, of whom 505 are foreign experts housed in hotels while the rest are in city or district facilities.
City authorities recently conducted random tests on 382 senior citizens living in social protection centers, more than 1,500 people at wholesale markets and more than 500 workers at Taiwanese-backed footwear company Pouyuen, HCMC's biggest employer, in Binh Tan District. All tested negative for the disease.
City Vice Chairman Le Thanh Liem warned that though the outbreak is under control, local authorities should not be complacent because there is still a potential risk of community spread.
Vietnam’s Covid-19 count is currently at 1,063, of these 99 are active cases. The country has now gone 12 days without new domestic infections.
By Huu Cong