Coronaviruses (CoV) are a large family of viruses that cause illness ranging from the common cold to more severe diseases such as Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS-CoV) and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS-CoV). A novel coronavirus (nCoV) is a new strain that has not been previously identified in humans.

By the morning of February 4, in Vietnam:

  • A total of 8 confirmed cases have been reported for novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV). Among them:
    – 2 Chinese patients being isolated at Cho Ray Hospital, Ho Chi Minh City. One of them has been identified negative for the disease and discharged from hospital on Tuesday (4/2).
    – 3 Vietnamese are being treated at National Hospital Of Tropical Diseases 2 in Dong Anh, Hanoi. 1 Vietnamese was isolated and treated at General Hospital of Thanh Hoa province and discharged on Monday (3/2). All 4 people mentioned above came back from Wuhan, China.
    – 1 Vietnamese is receptionist at a hotel, having close contact with the 2 Chinese people mentioned above. She is currently being isolated and treated at the Hospital of Tropical Diseases in Khanh Hoa Province, with stable health, expected to be discharged soon.
    – 1 patient with US nationality, flew back to Vietnam and transited in Wuhan. He is currently being treated at the National Hospital Of Tropical Diseases in Ho Chi Minh City.
  • Thus, in total, Vietnam has 2/8 cases that has been cured and discharged from hospital
  • 92 suspected cases of infection with nCoV virus. Of these, 65 have been tested negative. 27 cases are being strictly isolated so as not to infect the community.

What Vietnam Is Doing To Prevent The Disease

The government is taking a proactive stance to control the situation, with policies and early measures already in place.

  • Vietnam’s Ministry of Health has developed a treatment protocol and is implementing it in health centers in all 63 provinces and cities.In addition, Vietnam’s Ministry of Health has established 45 Emergency Response Teams to combat infections of nCoV. These teams are tasked to respond quickly to any reports of the virus and provide professional support to hospitals that are caring for individuals with nCoV infections.
  • Vietnam’s Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism has released instructions to the People’s Committees of local provinces and cities to:

– Temporarily cancel all festivals, including ongoing festivals, in provinces that have announced cases of the nCoV virus

– Temporarily cancel all activities at tourism sites and heritage sites across the country (except for specific cases) and avoid staging any large gatherings or events.

  • Vietnam has announced it will halt visa processing and the entrance of tourists to Vietnam from areas in China with confirmed outbreaks of the Novel Coronavirus (nCoV), as well as restrict the movement of Chinese visitors already in the country.


Common signs of infection include respiratory symptoms, fever, cough, shortness of breath and breathing difficulties. In more severe cases, infection can cause pneumonia, severe acute respiratory syndrome, kidney failure and even death.

Path of infection:

Coronaviruses are zoonotic, meaning they are transmitted between animals and people. The virus spreads from person to person through close contact with infected body fluids. Depending on the degree of spread of the virus, coughing, sneezing or shaking hands can make people infected.

Recommendations for travelers to prevent infection include:

1. Seek immediate medical attention if you have symptoms of fever, cough, or shortness of breath. Share your travel schedule with medical staff.

If you feel sick when traveling, you should immediately notify the airline, railway or road staff.

2. Some notes:

– Avoid close contact with anyone showing symptoms of respiratory illness such as coughing and sneezing.

– Maintaining basic hand and respiratory hygiene. Wash your hands often with soap and clean water; or alcohol-based hand cleaners.

– When coughing or sneezing, cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or a sleeve. After using a tissue, throw the tissue in the trash. Wash hands immediately.

– Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth.

– Safe food practices. Only use foods that are cooked and ensure food safety

– Do not spit indiscriminately in public

– Avoid close contact with farmed or wild animals, whether live, sick or dead.

3. Use a medical mask properly

– When using a respirator, make sure the respirator covers the mouth and nose and avoid touching the respirator while in use.

– If using disposable masks, immediately put them in the trash after use. Wash your hands after removing the mask.

Note for visitors on entry into Vietnam:

Currently all international point of entries in Vietnam (including roads, waterways, airways) have strengthened disease screening and applying health declaration for all passengers coming from the epidemic area, also applied remote thermometers. People with a higher than normal body temperature will be placed into quarantine for testing.

If Chinese tourists have a fever, they will be returned. Visitors from other countries who detect a fever will be taken to the nearest hospital for observation.

Hotline in Vietnam:

The Ministry of Health of Vietnam has published a hotline number for information on acute respiratory infections caused by nCoV virus 2019: 19003228.

Despite the complicated situation of the epidemic, visitors should not be too worried. Follow medical instructions and monitor the situation closely. Travel Sense Asia wishes you a safe journey!

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