Q.1: During the past one month, is the confirmed cases of COVID-19 in your country increasing, or decreasing?
Viet Nam has been in the fourth wave of Covid-19 since 27th April, 2021 with 934,583 newly reported cases and 22,283 reported deaths due to Covid-19. In October, the confirmed cases of Covid-19 has decreased, from approximately 11,000 cases per day to roughly 4,000 cases per day nationwide.
Q.2: In past several months, did your government declared and introduced strict measures to restrict movements or actions of general public? If yes, what were they?
Since the fourth outbreak of the pandemic in Ho Chi Minh City and other southern cities in Vietnam in June and July, 2021, the government has introduced strict measures to restrict movements of general public. For example, the Decree No. 16, bans the gathering of more than 2 people in public places and requires the distancing in communication activities. Bus, taxi are not allowed to transport people. People are also restricted to go out unless for very necessary needs. Schools are closed, pupils and students study online. In some firms and institutions, 50-70% of employees work remotely at home.
Q.3: How have your life and work changed because of COVID-19 pandemic?
Our life and work changed drastically due to Covid-19. We worked at home, exchanging the work through emails and shopping online. Honestly, we save some money for not sending children to school during the lockdown time. We also practiced the minimalism by spending less than before, saving more than before. However, we also suffer more stress than before because the children stay at home and we have to teach and take care of them.
Q4: What do you think are necessary for the society of your country to prepare for / to deal with another pandemic expected to happen in the future?
This is the fourth wave of the Covid-19 in Vietnam and it should prepare for the next wave in winter and spring. Strict measures such as testing and tracing the covid-19, home quarantine are still necessary and effective. Moreover, the vaccination should be accelerated so that the majority of population have at least two shots of Covid-19 vaccines. However, lockdown and strict ban of movement should be carefully considered to take because this may harm the economy and mess up the people's lives.
Q.5: How are you taking advantage of the experience with Meiji University? What do you think are the "growth" or "progress" that you made through the 2-year study?
Japan has gained incredible achievement in containing the pandemic. In the end of September, the government removed the emergency state and the life has become normal, with the surprising decrease of Covid-19 cases (currently only 400 cases per day nationwide). For my personal thinking, I am not ‘shocked’ at this, because this result is absolutely logically and understandable. During my 2 years study in Meiji University, I witnessed good practices of the Japanese people in the pandemic prevention and studies about public policies of Japan, which has brought some progress for me and has built my confidence in Japan’s successful containment of the pandemic.