|A medical worker at a Health Centre in District 7 talks with a COVID-19 patient who is being treated at home. Source of the centre|
HCM CITY— HCM City authorities are considering allowing 750 doctors and nurses who will graduate from Phạm Ngọc Thạch University of Medicine this year to work at health centres and stations in city districts, wards and communes.
The current regulations on issuing practising certificates do not allow new graduates to practise medicine at health centres and stations without beds in districts, wards and communes.
To earn a practising certificate, doctors have to practise medicine for 18 months at health establishments that have beds, while nurses, technicians and midwives must practise for nine months.
Four out of 22 health centres in districts and Thủ Đức City have beds. They are in districts 3, 5, 10 and Cần Giờ. The city has 310 health stations in wards and communes without beds.
To address the shortage of medical workers at health centres and stations in districts, wards and communes, the department has asked the People’s Committee to allow it to collaborate with Phạm Ngọc Thạch University of Medicine and assign general doctors and nurses who will graduate this year and in subsequent years to practise medicine at 22 health centres in districts and Thủ Đức City and 310 health stations in communes and wards.
In December, the university is expected to have 750 new doctor and nurse graduates.
The city Department of Health also wants the Ministry of Health to approve the pilot assignment of new graduates to practise medicine at health centres and stations for 12 months in the city. These doctors would continue practising at hospitals for six more months to get a practising certificates for treating common diseases and providing emergency first aid.
At the peak of the COVID-19 outbreak in July, many health stations admitted a large number of COVID-19 patients but they lacked a sufficient number of medical workers to treat patients and trace close contacts of patients.
Nguyễn Văn Vĩnh Châu, deputy director of the Department of Health, said the city’s grassroots health system was still underdeveloped because of a lack of investment in medical equipment and facilities, training of human resources, and application of information technology. VNS