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Vietnam Military Increasing Isolation Housing to 60,000 Beds

Bloomberg logo Bloomberg 3/19/2020 Mai Ngoc Chau and Nguyen Xuan Quynh

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(Bloomberg) -- Vietnam’s military is expanding its quarantine facilities to house about 60,000 people by adding as many as 20,000 beds as thousands of Vietnamese return home from virus-hit countries, the government said on its website.

The government, which has quarantined more than 21,000 people since the novel coronavirus outbreak hit the country in January, will be able to house 38,000 people more, it said. About 14,000 people have since been released from isolation.

Environment workers disinfect and collect waste from the quarantined area on Truc Bach Street in Hanoi on March 9.

Photographer: Linh Pham/Getty Images

Additionally, Ho Chi Minh City is converting dormitories at the Vietnam National University Ho Chi Minh City into a 20,000-bed quarantine zone, which will increase the municipality’s isolation capacity to 23,800 people, Tuoi Tre Newspaper reported, citing information from the city’s health department. That includes 1,500 beds at two facilities under the military.

Nearly 7,000 Vietnamese returned to the country by plane on Wednesday, including more than 5,700 from across Asean, after local carriers announced they are suspending flights to other Southeast Asian countries and Europe, Zing News reported, citing information from airports nationwide.

Hanoi may have to place more than 10,000 people under quarantine in coming days as large numbers of Vietnamese are expected to arrive at the capital city’s airport from virus-affected nations, Hanoi’s government said on its website, citing Mayor Nguyen Duc Chung.

Vietnam has monitored the health of 41,918 people that have had close contact with virus patients and or arrived from virus-hit countries, including 34,443 under self-quarantine at homes, as of Wednesday, the health ministry said on its website.

Vietnam has confirmed 76 infection cases, including 16 patients that recovered, according to the health ministry.

(Updates story with Hanoi’s quarantine plans in the fifth paragraph.)

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