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Vietnam stops requiring Covid-19 testing for incoming visitors

The Prime Minister has just sent a cable about suspending the requirement to be tested for SARS-CoV-2 before entering Vietnam.

According to the announcement of the World Health Organization, currently, Covid-19 epidemic began to tend to decrease both the number of cases and deaths on a global scale. In addition, basic vaccines are still effective against variants of the SARS-CoV-2 virus. Many countries and territories have gradually relaxed anti-epidemic measures, including the requirement for Covid-19 testing for entry.

In Vietnam, after a period of implementing epidemic prevention and control solutions, epidemic prevention has brought positive results. The number of new cases in the country has decreased continuously since March 15, the number of severe cases and deaths related to Covid-19 has decreased, and the coverage of Covid-19 vaccines has been high. In that context, the Ministry of Health has issued a document directing to stop making medical declarations for people entering Vietnam from April 27.

In order to ensure the application of epidemic prevention and control measures and at the same time create favorable conditions to promote socio-economic recovery activities, the Prime Minister’s telegram stated: “Pausing the requirement to test for SARS- CoV-2 before entering Vietnam from May 15. The Ministry of Health closely monitors the epidemic situation and promptly guides appropriate epidemic prevention and control measures.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs directs Vietnamese agencies abroad to notify people wishing to enter Vietnam to comply with epidemic prevention and control requirements under the guidance of the Ministry of Health.

Previously, many domestic experts also agreed with the proposal to stop requiring Covid-19 testing for people entering by air. According to Associate Professor Nguyen Lan Hieu, Director of Hanoi Medical University Hospital, the number of countries that require negative SARS-CoV-2 test results before entry is very small.

He analyzed two main reasons. Firstly, the epidemic has been in remission globally and the number of countries applying the Covid-19 zero policy is counting on the fingers. Second, scientifically, the value of the Covid-19 test is very limited at this stage. 24 hours with rapid test and 72 hours with PCR purely for reference only.

Consensus, Associate Professor Do Van Dung, University of Medicine and Pharmacy, Ho Chi Minh City, said that the Covid-19 situation in Vietnam is stable and there is no risk of dangerous mutations in the world. Therefore, stopping testing with visitors is completely reasonable.

As of the end of March 2022, more than 50 countries and territories around the world have suspended the requirement of pre-entry testing for international visitors. Including the UK, Norway, Iceland, Canada, Peru, Maldives… Of course, many countries only apply to imported guests who have had enough vaccinations.

In Southeast Asia, Cambodia, Singapore, Indonesia, the Philippines and Thailand are also gradually removing this regulation.

Ngoc Trang

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