Ambassador Grete Lochen on the covid-19 situation in Norway and Vietnam

 

Norway’s Ambassador to Vietnam Grete Lochen. (Photo: Norway Embassy)

In a recent interview with media the World and Vietnam Report, Ambassador Lochen talked about the Covid-19 situation in Norway and Vietnam, shared what Norway has done to control the pandemic while praising Vietnam for how the country had been able to contain the pandemic for a long time with impressive low numbers of infected people as well as deaths.

According to her, the pandemic has posed unprecedented challenges to our nations, however, it has inspired many heart-touching stories about how people treat each other regardless of nationality and language boundaries.

The Ambassador said that like Vietnam, Norway acted quickly to limit the virus from spreading domestically, and limit infection from abroad while increasing health service capacity. The policy-making process in Norway has been focusing on three key targets: limiting disease spread, mitigating economic effects, and engaging with the psychosocial consequences. Although Norway is not an EU member, there has also been close cooperation and coordination with other European countries regarding vaccine policies, developing digital vaccine passports, and opening up for international travel again. 

The Ambassador emphasized the importance of vaccination to build herd immunity. Currently, the Covid-19 situation in Vietnam is getting more complicated and according to the Ambassador, vaccination is very important with the more contagious Delta variant dominating also in Vietnam. Vaccination helps build herd immunity but “unfortunately, the global demand outstrips vaccine supply which is also affecting the availability of vaccines in Vietnam. Hopefully, we will see more vaccines arriving in Vietnam in the second half of the year,” the Ambassador said.

The Ambassador is appreciating Vietnam’s good efforts and strategies in response to Covid-19 and living and working in Vietnam she has been impressed by how Vietnamese health workers and other front liners have been rushing to affected areas to assist in fighting the pandemic, leaving their own families and friends and working grueling shifts. “It tells a lot about the strength of the Vietnamese people. No one would forget the story about Vietnamese doctors fighting hard for 100 days to save the life of the British pilot last March. This patient No.91 has caught the headlines of not only local but also international media,” the Ambassador said.

Read the full interview with Ambassador Grete Lochen here

About Mette Larsen

ScandAsia Journalist • Scandinavian Publishing Co., Ltd. • Thailand

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