ADB assists Vietnam to increase number of health professionals

Thursday, 2018-12-13 16:05:48
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Hanoi Medical University is one of the beneficiaries of the ADB project. (Photo: Wikipedia)
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NDO - The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has approved an US$80 million loan to improve the quality of health professional training at two major medical universities in Vietnam.

The project, which involves Hanoi Medical University and the University of Medicine and Pharmacy in Ho Chi Minh City aims to increase the annual undergraduate enrolment capacity by 2,200 and produce 1,863 additional health professional graduates from 2032.

A US$3 million grant from the Japan Fund for Poverty Reduction, financed by the Japanese government and to be administered by the ADB, will support the updating of training programmes to ensure that graduates are better skilled to address community health needs, particularly in disadvantaged settings.

The quality of medical staff in remote health facilities will also be enhanced through the delivery of continuous medical education programmes using innovative distance learning technologies.

“The project will help Vietnam achieve its universal health coverage targets by upgrading infrastructure and boosting enrolment at two leading health education institutions,” said ADB Senior Health Specialist Gerard Servais.

Vietnam faces a shortage of skilled health professionals, including an estimated 43,250 doctors, 249,416 nurses, and 22,199 pharmacists by 2030.

The project seeks to address one major obstacle: limited physical space and outdated programmes at Vietnam’s health education and professional training institutions restricting increases in student enrolment and subsequently the number of qualified graduates.