Doctor Hoang Ngoc Linh treats a patient with his acupuncture techniques. — Photo nhandan.com.vn
ĐẮK LẮK — Early in the morning, when Captain Hoàng Ngọc Linh was preparing for his normal day at the Ia Rvê Commune Health Clinic, he heard a sudden emergency call. He quickly grabbed his medical bag set off.
A local resident, Trương Thị Oanh, had fainted un a cassava field.
She was treated and recovered after Linh's arrival.
Doctor Linh came to the small military health clinic in Ea Súp District of the Central Highlands province of Đăk Lắk only two years ago but local residents all know him well and love him dearly.
Ia Rvê is one of the poor border communes, where more than 60 per cent of households are classified as poor. The roads are hard to travel and the district health facilities are more than 50km away. Even the commune health station is 10km from the village.
Therefore, the military medical clinic is a reliable address that nearly 7,000 people in the commune rely on.
Linh and his colleagues have been able to treat many diseases that are difficult to cure, such as facial paralysis, sciatica and spinal issues.
Patients with diseases such as back pain, hand paralysis and hemiplegia due to complications, have all had positive changes, and many of them have quickly recovered after following Linh’s treatment regime.
Lương Thị Hom, 70, who suffered from sciatica, had to travel to the district hospital for treatment for a long time but her conditions didn’t improve much. Her kids were away and her husband often had to take her to the district clinic on their old bike.
Doctor Linh offered to come and treat her at home after he finished his work at the clinic. Half a month later, Hom’s condition improved remarkably and she could walk again easily. The old couple grew fond of the young doctor as if he was their own child.
Captain Linh enlisted at the age of 20. A year later, in 2003, he was admitted to Military Medical High School. After three years, he was assigned to work in hospitals along the border in the Central Highlands. At that time, people's lives were very difficult. Dengue fever and malaria were common.
People still worshipped forest ghosts when they get sick. Linh, at that time, was a physician in Bi Village (Ia O Commune, Gia Lai Province) who could not persuade people to go to the health clinic. Once, he joined a traditional ceremony with local residents to pray for good health. At the end of the session, he secretly put medicine into a banana from the ceremony to convince a patient to "eat to take good luck from god".
Born in the poor countryside of Nghệ An Province, Linh witnessed his father suffer from many diseases. He died while he and his comrades were fighting a dengue epidemic along the Gia Lai Province border area. This only made Linh more determined to follow the medical profession to heal people.
After five years studying at the University of Medicine and Pharmacy in HCM City, Linh graduated and was assigned to the Ia Rvê military medical clinic.
As the supplies provided by the Government do not meet the needs of treatment for people, Doctor Linh has spent his time finding herbal medicines from local forests and national parks.
Linh can only visit his family once a month due to his busy work at the clinic. It’s an 80km journey through the forest path. In the dry season, things are okay and he can ride his bike with not much difficulty. But in the rainy season, he has to take the longer road, which is about 250km long.
"It's good enough for me that people in this area are well taken care of," Linh said. VNS