HCM City health department says medical checks for air passengers no longer needed

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Passengers complete a health declaration form at HCM City’s Tân Sơn Nhất airport. — Photo courtesy of the airport authority

HCM CITY — The HCM City Department of Health wants to stop COVID-19 checks for passengers arriving at Tân Sơn Nhất international airport to ease congestion at the country’s largest airport and made the recommendation to the HCM City Centre for Disease Control.

It pointed out it is unnecessary since all passengers are checked by airlines prior to boarding a flight to Việt Nam as required by the Ministry of Health.

To save time for passengers completing immigration procedures, the airport has a separate entry for those who have completed health declarations prior to boarding.

After presenting the QR code to the medical officer at the airport, passengers can go for immigration procedures instead of waiting for QR code scanning and information verification as before.

Meanwhile, passengers who have not made health declarations can do it at the airport using QR codes available widely at the airport with assistance from medical and airline staff.

According to airport authorities, it is common for passengers to fail to make health declarations prior to leaving or provide incorrect or insufficient information, which wastes a lot of time.

Since March the number of passengers entering Việt Nam, mostly via HCM City and Hà Nội airports, has been increasing rapidly. Now an average of 40 flights bring 4,000-4,500 passengers daily.

According to the ministry’s latest regulations issued on March 15, international air passengers are required to make medical declarations at http://tokhaiyte.vn or the Vietnam Health Declaration app prior to leaving and have a negative RT-PCR test result.

These requirements cause congestion at airports especially with the increasing number of passengers.

The city People’s Committee too last week called on the ministry to scrap health declaration procedures at Tân Sơn Nhất to ease congestion, saying the pandemic is under control.

Instead, passengers should be told to self-monitor and declare their health condition via the PC-COVID app during their stay in Việt Nam, it added. — VNS

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