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$21m health programme launched

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The Ministry of Health and the World Health Organisation (WHO) in Vietnam on Wednesday launched a new Health Co-operation Programme for 2018-2019.

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The Ministry of Health and the World Health Organisation (WHO) in Vietnam on Wednesday launched a new Health Co-operation Programme for 2018-2019. —  Photo Duong Ngoc

Under the programme, they will work side-by-side to strengthen the capacity of the health system to deliver quality and equitable health services, especially to the poor and vulnerable groups; to respond to the burden of communicable and non-communicable diseases and other public health threats; to provide quality services at the grassroots level; to enhance efficiency and effectiveness in health financing; and strengthen regulations for pharmaceuticals, vaccines and medical products to ensure better access to essential medicines and health technologies.

The programme will be implemented from January 2018 to December 2019, with an estimated budget of US$21 million.

Speaking at the launching ceremony, Deputy Health Minister Le Quang Cuong said that Vietnam is dealing with the dual burdens of diseases and rapid aging.

Vietnamese’s health has improved, with reduced mortality rate of mothers, newborns and children under five years old, reduced rate of communicable diseases and better access to clean water.

However, the country faces major challenges in health care, including negative impacts of climate change, unsafe water sources and food, malnutrition and food security.

Notably, Vietnam’s disease burden is changing and is increasingly characterised by non-communicable diseases (NCDs). NCDs are now estimated to account for 73% of total deaths while the proportion of elderly population aged 60 years and older reached 10% in 2014. 

Child malnutrition, especially stunting, maternal deaths and neonatal death continue to disproportionately affect the most vulnerable segments of the population. In addition, communicable diseases continue to be a problem, and emerging and re-emerging infectious diseases pose a threat to the health security of Vietnam. 

Deputy Minister Cuong said that Vietnam appreciated the WHO’s assistances in disease prevention and control, treatment, policy consultation and training.

“WHO is a reliable partner of Vietnam in caring, protecting and improving health in the country,” he said. 

Source: VietNamNet

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