Dinh Thi Ngoc Minh, Chairwoman of Tuan Minh Group.
According to the United Nations Population Fund, Việt Nam is experiencing a rapidly ageing population. People aged 60 and over made up 11.9 per cent of the total population in 2019. By 2050, this number will increase to more than 25 per cent.
By 2036, Việt Nam will enter an ageing population, transitioning from ageing to an ageing society. One of the challenges that the ageing population trend poses is the issue of welfare for the elderly.
Dinh Thi Ngoc Minh, Chairwoman of Tuan Minh Group, said that creating ideal spaces that combine healthcare and community activities, like a miniature society dedicated to the elderly, can be an effective solution for them to live happily get over their fear of loneliness.
"This opens up opportunities to develop nursing homes in Việt Nam, a trend gradually gaining popularity globally and is expected to grow strongly soon," said Minh.
The population ageing in Việt Nam is happening fast, but nursing home services are still in their infancy. How do you assess the potential of this segment in the future?
The elderly care market in Việt Nam is now an untapped gold mine. According to statistics, by 2038, over one-fifth of Việt Nam's population will be elderly (from 60 or older).
The country will be one with the fastest population ageing rate globally. However, in 2018, Việt Nam only had about 102 general facilities with subdivisions taking care of the elderly.
There were 32 facilities specialising in taking care of the elderly across the country. Most of these facilities provide only minimal care services for the elderly, which is not commensurate with the increasing demands of the people. Therefore, the room for developing nursing home services in Việt Nam is huge.
According to Vietnamese tradition, children are obliged to care for their parents in old age. Such a mindset cannot be changed easily. Do you agree?
We can look at our neighbour, China, not to mention other developed countries. China is a country with a culture and traditional mindset quite similar to Việt Nam. Over the past decade, more than 40,000 nursing homes have been built to accommodate more than 264 million people aged 60 and above as of 2020.
Việt Nam is also not an exception to this trend when there is a significant change in perspectives and lifestyles. Securing places in a nursing home for parents is also a way to, at the same time, show filial piety and balance their own life, as long as it still ensures the connection and cohesion between family members.
Many Vietnamese people are also aware that caring for the elderly requires knowledge of psychology and pathology to have an appropriate way of communicating and dealing with common health problems such as high blood pressure, diabetes, and risk of stroke.
Just 10 years from now, the face of the nursing home market in Việt Nam will be completely different, maybe even like Japan, the US or the European region.
What are the difficulties in developing the nursing homes of Tuan Minh Group?
When deciding to develop into the 5-star nursing home segment in Việt Nam, the Tuan Minh Group team is completely confident in our capacity and thorough preparation.
Of course, being a pioneer, we will have to go through many ups and downs when building everything from zero. Regarding the market, we have a certain difficulty because nursing homes are a less familiar concept for many people, and high-end nursing homes are even more brand new. However, the public's outlook on life is changing rapidly, proportional to the speed of economic development, urbanisation, and the increasingly modern and open lifestyle.
S-merciful nursing homes offer resort-style facilities.
What makes Tuan Minh different from other businesses developing nursing homes?
We aim to create an entirely new model and concept in Việt Nam. "Premium resorts for the elderly" are based on two main standards: five-star resorts and comprehensive medical care.
Our nursing homes cater for a chain of high-class facilities such as resorts, a team of experienced doctors, nurses and staff; a comprehensive medical care system, physiotherapy room, and oriental medicine examination.
We also pay a lot of attention to activities to improve physical and mental health, such as gym, yoga, meditation, cinema, tea ceremony, club, massage service, sauna, and jacuzzis.
With a maximum density of 300 people in each residence, every five clients will receive specialised care from one nurse and one aide. Ambulances and standard doctors are available at the centre around the clock. The elderly will also be regularly reunited with their families with our free round-trip family shuttle service.
How do you envision the resort - nursing service of Tuan Minh Group in the next 10 years?
Tuan Minh Group aims to expand the network of 30 nursing centres across the country with the same service quality, the total investment is expected to be US$150 million.
I am hopeful that Tuan Minh Group and S-Merciful Nursing Homes, in the next 10 years, will become familiar and public-friendly brands in the nursing care market in Việt Nam.
In addition, we also aim to develop the first resort-retirement real estate projects in Việt Nam, keeping up with the trend of an increasing number of elderly customers.