|Health workers conducted COVID-19 testing for residents on Bạch Mai Street, Hà Nội, on December 5, 2021. — VNA/VNS Photo|
HÀ NỘI — Hà Nội needs to tighten the management and supervision of home quarantine for close contacts of COVID-19 patients in a bid to prevent the spread of the virus in the community, the city’s Department of Health has said.
The department’s director Trần Thị Nhị Hà said the rapid increase in the number of COVID-19 infections as the city reopens was predictable.
The city has established three treatment levels for COVID-19 patients. At the first level, patients will be quarantined and treated at home or in local healthcare centres. At the second level, patients will be treated at 19 district-level general hospitals. At the third level, patients will be treated at central hospitals.
Hà Nội has applied home quarantine for F0 and F1 cases in 30 districts since earlier this month. This will help ease pressure on the city’s healthcare system, reducing the risk of cross-infection at quarantine sites and making treatment more convenient.
Under the regulations, patients are only allowed to begin their home quarantine period when they are confirmed to meet quarantine standards and commit to strictly comply with all regulations.
A resident in Thanh Xuân Trung Ward in Thanh Xuân District said she informed the local health centre after her son, a university student, had close contact with a COVID-19 patient.
She was told to quarantine her son at home and wait for PCR testing. A day later, she called the local People’s Committee and reported her son’s case. He was tested at noon.
She said health workers didn’t tell her how to classify waste or check if her house was eligible for home quarantine. There were no warning signs put up for her neighbours.
Things were different in Phố Huế Ward in Hai Bà Trưng District. An F0 case was allowed to isolate at home, and health workers came every day, checking his body temperature and guiding him how to take care of himself properly.
Phan Bá Tường, chairman of Phố Huế Ward’s People’s Committee, said grassroots health workers would work harder and the local authority would strengthen inspections when COVID-19 patients were home quarantining.
Without strict supervision, the risk of spreading the virus in the community would be high, he said.
He also raised concerns about a shortage of staff as cases rise.
More than 778,780 out of 1,993,336 households have been approved as meeting conditions for home quarantine. Currently, 5,585 F1 cases are quarantined at home in the city. — VNS