A doctor performs a health check-up on an ethnic minority child in northern Việt Nam. — VNA/VNS Photo Dương Ngọc
HÀ NỘI — Support from the European Union (EU) has helped Việt Nam achieve health-related development goals, especially the improvement of health care for mothers and children, over the past decade.
Participants were updated on the programme's achievements at a national conference hosted by the Ministry of Health on May 8 in Hà Nội.
“We are here today, looking back the journey of more than 20 years together, and we are very pleased to see that the Ministry of Health, provincial health departments and directors of health facilities continue to demonstrate high commitment to improving health service quality as a core objective of sector reform," said Ambassador of the European Union Bruno Angelet at the event.
“Over the past years, the EU’s financial support has created favourable conditions for the health sector to achieve strategic objectives of Millennium Development Goals, including mother and child health care, universal coverage of health insurance, improvement of capacity for service quality at all levels, development of health sector policies and action plans for the 2016-20 period,” said Deputy Minister of Health Nguyễn Viết Tiến.
“In coming years, we do hope that the EU will continue supporting Việt Nam's health sector in preventing non-communicable diseases, birth defects and population ageing–related issues,” said Tiến.
With a total budget of VNĐ3.5 trillion (US$152 million) from 2011 to 2019, the EU Health Sector Policy Support Programme in Việt Nam is the largest of its kind in Asia. The programme places particular focus on the poorest provinces and most disadvantaged districts – home to ethnic minority groups – helping to increase insurance coverage; training of health professionals (including doctors, nurses, midwives and birth attendants); renovation of hospitals and commune health stations; provision of essential medical equipment; standardisation of clinical guidelines for health services; and hospital quality management.
During the one-day event, participants discussed solutions to replicate these achievements in the future. Among other things, continued training of midwives and disseminating mother and child health handbooks along with greater engagement of both the public and private sectors are crucial.
In the past decades, Việt Nam made reached remarkable achievements in the implementation of the UN’s Millennium Development Goals on reducing maternal and neonatal mortality. — VNS