Industry parks lack women's healthcare
HAI DUONG — Deputy director of Hai Duong Department of Health, Do Thi Thanh Xuan, said more than 570 cases of abortion were reported in the province in the first six month this year, and nearly 300 of them were workers from industrial zones.
But Hoang Thi Thu, head of the provincial Labour Federation's Woman Association, said that while taking care of female workers' reproductive health was important, few enterprises in the province paid much attention to it.
The province now has nearly 200 industrial enterprises in the nine industrial zones – and 70 per cent of their workers are female. However, only 40 per cent of them receive gynaecology checks during their annual health review.
Thu said it was difficult to arrange training courses to help the women and girls as they often worked overtime. Most healthcare information in the province was generally given in the home.
She said industrial zones in the province did not have medical stations to treat or help workers and the number of trained reproductive workers was limited.
Female workers themselves do not seem to want to spend time on attending lessons on reproductive health," she said.
La Thi Hue, from the province's Ninh Giang District works with Chau Giang Co Ltd, said she worked overtime three days a week.
"When return home, I only want to sleep and do not have enough energy to join any activities," she said.
However, Hue said she wanted to learn about reproductive health, including contraception and sexually transmitted diseases, but did not know how to arrange time to do this.
In the meantime, Thu said that the provincial Labour Federation would deliver condoms and leaflets on reproductive health to workers' homes and boarding houses.
Knowledge on maternal health would also be spread on TV programmes, making it easier for workers to learn after their work. The federation spends VND6-10 million (US$285-480) a year organising up to 10 classes on reproductive health, family planning and safe motherhood for workers in industrial zones.
"Taking care of reproductive health for female workers should be compulsory when an enterprise is founded," said Thu. — VNS