Hanoi is facing a shortage of materials for PCR testing to tackle Covid-19, Hanoi CDC announced at a meeting on August 10.
Bac Tu Liem District authorities said that 5,560 people had returned from Danang and 4,441 of them returned from July 15. “We have taken samples for 550 people but we still need 3,890 more test kits,” he said.
The authorities of Nam Tu Liem District said they had taken 536 samples and there are 4,217 people waiting. In Thanh Xuan District, 493 cases had been taken samples for tests and 4,500 people in waiting. Some 6,000 people returned to Cau Giay District from Danang but only 390 samples taken. Ha Dong and Hoai Duc authorities also asked for more test kits.
Director of the Department of Health Nguyen Khac Hien said they had called for donations and received 30,000 sets of RT-PCR testing equipment. The Ministry of Health will provide 40,000 kits.
Deputy head of Hanoi CDC Truong Quang Viet said 6,531 samples had been sent to Bach Mai Hospital and 2,672 of them came back negative. All of the 324 samples sent to the National Children’s Hospital and 30 samples sent to the National Hospital of Tropical Diseases were negative.
Viet went on to say that since August 7, they have received 9,000 kits from Tam Anh Hospital and 500 from other donors. “Hong Ngoc Hospital will donate 20,000 sets. They have sent 5,000 kits which have been distributed to all districts,” Viet said.
Hanoi CDC will work with Military Medical University and the National Institute of Hygiene and Epidemiology about the shortage. The procedures to buy more kits have been completed and are waiting for directives from the Department of Health and Hanoi People’s Committee. However, they are struggling to find suppliers.
The National Institute of Hygiene and Epidemiology has to provide kits to various places and it will take two days for a supplier in HCM City to transport the kits to Hanoi. The Military Medical University is unlikely to be able to meet the orders.
“The Department of Health and Hanoi CDC should work with the Ministry of Health. It’s not enough if we only have 4,000-5,000 kits a day,” said Ngo Van Quy, vice-chairman of Hanoi People’s Committee.
Hanoi Chairman Nguyen Duc Chung said the public awareness campaign was still lacking and not carried out as strongly as during the first wave. Many drivers still do not wear face masks and home isolation management is lax. Everyone who returned from Danang from July 8 must file medical declaration forms and those who returned from July 15 must be tested.
In reality, people still gather at street food stalls and restaurants. People inside apartment complexes are also more relaxed and local authorities do not have strict punishment and strong measures to deal with the problem. Up to 50 people were seen gathered at a street food stall in Ha Dong District. Many people also gathered to see a street chess match and no one wore face masks. Since 7 am on August 8, dozens of cafe and restaurants on Trung Kinh Street were full and social distancing rules were ignored.
Nguyen Thi Mo, owner of a street food stall on Ngo Thi Nhan Street said their income depended on the stall and she still had customers every day so she didn’t intend to close it yet.
“The situation is more complicated in Danang. Hanoi still has very few cases so we are still open. If the authorities give warning or a fine then I’ll close,” she said.
This article was originally published in Dtinews