HCM CITY (VNS)— Work will begin on the delayed HCM City Pediatric Hospital in
Binh Chanh District next February if existing land clearance problems are solved.
The new hospital is expected to reduce existing overload on the city's two major peadiatric hospitals located in districts 1 and 10.
Nguyen Tan Binh, head of the HCM City Health Department, revealed the new schedule at a meeting held with the city's People's Council's Economic Budget Board.
The project to build the 12.47 ha hospital with 1,000 beds had been approved by the municipal People's Committee in 2007 and was set to become operational next year, but land compensation problems have stalled it.
Huynh Van Biet, deputy head of the Health Department, said people affected by the project have refused to accept the low compensation of VND200,000-357,000 (US$9.5-17) per square metre of land offered by the authorities.
Furthermore, there are 199 graves on the hospital site, but so far, just 13 families have registered to move 32 of them.
Nguyen Van Tuong, deputy chairman of the HCM City People's Committee, said that apart from the City Peadiatric Hospital, four other projects planned in the district – the Pham Ngoc Thach Medical Hospital, a cardiac institute, an ENT (Ear-Nose-Throat) hospital and a Hematology and Blood Transfusion Centre – have been delayed.
"These projects will affect 75 families and total land compensation is estimated at VND300 billion ($14.3 million)," he said.
In a recent meeting with the People's Committee, Health Minister Nguyen Thi Kim Tien had commented on the slow progress made in the plan to build hospitals in HCM City's outlying districts in order to reduce the existing overload on major hospitals.
The major hospitals are located in the city's inner districts now, which means there is no land to expand them while the demand for health check-ups and treatment is constantly increasing. The number of people coming from other provinces to be treated in the city is also a major contributor to the current overload.
Tien asked the city to speed up work on these projects.
Nguyen Tan Tuyen, deputy head of the Economic Budget Committee, said the department should amend the project plans so that they can move ahead.
The People's Committee should have its own policy on land compensation in order to solve existing bottle-necks, he said.
Under a long-term healthcare development plan, by 2020, four clusters of hospitals will be built in the city's four gateways with the target of reducing 70 per cent of the existing overload on major hospitals situated in inner districts. — VNS