The southern province of Binh Duong has decided to continue applying social distancing measures under the Prime Minister’s Directive 16 in “red zones” for 15 days while "freezing" 15 wards in Thuan An and Di An cities and Tan Uyen township as infections have continued surging over the past days.
The southern industrial hub reported a record of 5,414 new cases on August 29, pushing the province's count in the fourth wave of infections to over 104,000. Its death toll has reached 819.
According to the provincial Steering Committee for COVID-19 Prevention and Control, Thuan An is the current biggest hotspot of the province with 3,341 new cases confirmed in the past 24 hours.
Binh Duong failed to complete its earlier goal of controlling the pandemic and bringing the province to a new normal from September 1. The extension of social distancing measures will give time for the province to speed up testing to detect infections in the community.
Local authorities in the “red zones” were asked to mobilise vehicles to transport goods to provide food and necessities for local residents.
Meanwhile, Secretary of the Binh Duong Party Committee Nguyen Van Loi requested relevant forces to promptly complete the construction of temporary hospitals for COVID-19 treatment in the province.
As scheduled, a 1,000-bed hospital in Lai Hung commune, Bau Vang district, is likely to be completed on August 30, while construction of another with capacity of 2,800 beds will be finished in the next few days.
At the same time, Thu Dau Mot city is operating dozens of quarantine facilities with a capacity of about 13,000 beds. Many existing establishments have been switched to temporary hospitals for treatment of COVID-19 patients.
The province has been working hard to speed up vaccinations for local residents. As of August 28, 865,441 doses of COVID-19 vaccines had been injected to locals, with 37,927 people fully receiving two shots.