It will be in place for 15 days from Monday afternoon.
The government’s Directive 16 on social distancing requires people to maintain a distance of at least two meters from each other and prohibits gatherings of more than two people in public, except in offices, schools and hospitals.
People should only leave home for emergencies, buying food or medicines or going to factories, production facilities and businesses related to “essential” goods and services.
“We have to be resolute, otherwise we will fail in this anti-pandemic campaign,” Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc said Monday.
Speaking at a meeting where it was decided to impose social distancing on Da Nang, he said: “We have not talked about a ‘lockdown’ for Da Nang at this time, but social distancing measures must be applied.”
Acting health minister Nguyen Thanh Long said a new, stronger strain of virus has infected people and patients need to be put on ventilators.
Da Nang People’s Committee Chairman Huynh Duc Tho said the pandemic situation has become worrisome with 12 people suspected to be infected and transmission among medical staff at hospitals.
The city had three cases of local transmission last weekend, the first in Vietnam in more than three months, with authorities have yet to identify the source of infection.
The Da Nang General Hospital, Hospital C and the Da Nang Orthopedic and Rehabilitation Hospital, which the patients visited just before they were diagnosed with Covid-19, have been locked down.
Long said: “The biggest outbreak is at three hospitals situated close to each other and the infections occurring in these hospitals are similar to those at Bach Mai Hospital in Hanoi, which used to be Vietnam’s biggest Covid-19 hotspot.”
Da Nang plans to test 10,000 people.
It has banned entry for visitors and closed non-essential services like amusement parks, beauty parlors, karaoke and massage parlors, and bars from Sunday afternoon.
On Sunday, one more person, in nearby Quang Ngai Province, was also diagnosed with the disease.
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