Key medical projects delayed due to land, budget shortages

May 22, 2021 - 08:20

A number of key hospital projects slated for completion in the next five years have been postponed because of delays in land acquisition and capital shortages, according to city authorities.


The new HCM City Children’s Hospital with a capacity of 1,000 beds in Bình Chánh District opened in 2018, but still needs more funds from the central budget to complete infrastructure. Photo

HCM CITY — A number of key hospital projects slated for completion in the next five years have been postponed because of delays in land acquisition and capital shortages, according to the city authorities.

Nguyễn Thành Phong, chairman of the municipal People’s Committee, said that three hospital infrastructure projects worth a total of VNĐ3 trillion (nearly US$131 million) were slated to be implemented in the 2012-20 period. Investment was sourced from the central budget, but only VNĐ211.89 billion has been allocated.

The projects included the HCM City Children’s Hospital with capacity of 1,000 beds in Bình Chánh District and the Oncology Hospital with 1,000 beds in Thủ Đức City.

The work projects at the two hospitals, which both opened in 2018, have total adjusted capital of more than VNĐ10.321 trillion, of which the central budget accounts for VNĐ8.800 trillion, but not enough has been allocated.

The remaining unallocated capital is more than VNĐ2.2 trillion, according to Phong. The city proposed this year that the Prime Minister allocate more than VNĐ2.2 trillion for all three major hospital infrastructure projects.

According to a recent report from the Department of Health, many similar projects have been delayed due to the lack of the Government capital and delays in land acquision.

These include the Tân Kiên – Bình Chánh Hi-Tech medical cluster in Bình Chánh District. Its 1/2000 zoning plan was approved by the city in 2015.

The second branch of Phạm Ngọc Thạch University of Medicine has been postponed because the appraisal of the construction drawing design and the total estimate has yet to be conducted by the authorities.

The construction of Saigon General Hospital in District 1 has been approved with a scale of 300 beds and an area of ​​​​about 10ha under the BT (build - transfer) investment mode. But District 1 People’s Committee has not handed over the land to the investor.

Waiting for land 

Thủ Đức City Hospital, which receives an average of 5,000-6,000 patients every day for examination and treatment, is overloaded and has failed to meet demand in Thủ Đức City and surrounding areas, according to the Department of Health.

A project to expand the hospital has been approved as part of a larger plan to develop the hospital over the next five years.

The Department of Health recommended that Thủ Đức City set aside about 22,500sq.m of land to implement this project.

In addition, the so-called creative urban area in the Eastern part of HCM City (now new Thủ Đức City) needs an area of 10ha to build a hospital with 1,000 beds, and a total of 15ha to build a psychiatric hospital and an emergency centre.

HCM City has 125 hospitals with a total capacity of 38,712 beds (with a rate of 42.8 beds per 10,000 residents). The city has 6,380 health clinics, including 6,124 specialised clinics and 256 polyclinics, of which 63 are foreign-owned. 

The city plans to complete a number of key hospital infrastructure projects in the next five years, including new infrastructure for three general hospitals in Hóc Môn, Củ Chi and Thủ Đức districts.

The city will also build or renovate infrastructure for three international-standard general and specialist hospitals: Nhân Dân Gia Định, An Bình and Bình Dân.

Over the last five years, the health sector has completed 52 hospital projects and purchased many new pieces of equipment. As many as 42 other projects are being carried out. — VNS

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