|A soccer stadium in Vietnam welcomes 10,000 spectators after the COVID-19 pandemic is controlled (Photo: VNA)
The article noted that Vietnam’s success was no accident. Its nearly 1,500 km border with China and frequent visitors from Wuhan, the site of the original outbreak in December and January, meant that Vietnam could have been overrun with cases. But it acted fast and did not wait for official warnings from the World Health Organization (WHO) before it closed its borders, locked down its economy, and launched screening, tracing, and quarantine measures.
Guy Thwaites, a professor of infectious diseases and Director of the Oxford University Clinical Research Unit in Vietnam, said Vietnam acted early because it was well aware of the dangers of unchecked infectious diseases. He said Vietnamese people are very respectful of the threat of infectious diseases and know they have to be treated early. Thwaites said he believes the low infection numbers and lack of fatalities to be accurate, as he has access to official data and has visited local hospitals.