International health literacy conference held in Hai Phong

Experts from the US, Australia, Thailand, Mongolia and Vietnam gathered at a conference in the port city of Hai Phong on November 7 to discuss ways to promote health literacy and the overall quality of healthcare services in Vietnam.

AHLA President Yaw Tang Shih shares on the sidelines of the conference.
AHLA President Yaw Tang Shih shares on the sidelines of the conference.

The International Health Literacy Conference 2016 (AHLA), the fourth of its kind, is hosted by the Asian Health Literacy Association, offers opportunities for experience sharing in accessing effective healthcare services among participating nations.

During the three-day event, participants focused discussions on five goals: improving the quality of healthcare services and narrowing the gap among community groups and nations; encouraging dialogues among patients, caregivers, healthcare service providers, managers, policymakers and media; enhancing public awareness of the burden of low health literacy on non-communicable diseases; increasing patients’ satisfaction; and promoting global sustainable human development.

Addressing the event, Deputy Minister of Health Le Quang Cuong said Vietnam is a rapidly growing country in Asia, therefore the sustainability of development and health is critical. Health literacy is an effective way to improve healthcare quality and reduce health disparities among communities, groups, and society.

Vietnam has mobilised multiple resources for implementing 20 programmes on healthcare and disease prevention, including health literacy, Cuong added.

AHLA President Yaw Tang Shih said health literacy helps integrate all stakeholders, including healthcare service providers, patients, families and communities, and improve the quality of healthcare services at all levels.