Domestic medical service increasingly attracts overseas Vietnamese

Lately, more Vietnamese people living abroad and foreigners have arrived in Vietnam for medical services. They are driving forces for local medical sector to improve its quality in a bid to attract tourists and persuade Vietnamese wealthy patients to receive treatment in the country instead abroad.

 

Domestic medical service increasingly attracts overseas Vietnamese

Early 2019, while returning the Southeast Asian for reuniting with relatives in Tet holiday ( the Lunar New Year), Mrs. Tran Minh Chau and her husband from the US went to Tu Du Maternity for In vitro fertilization (IVF) treatment.
The couple were delighted with successful treatment. Chau said it costs $20,000 for a treatment in the US with success rate of 30 percent and takes a long time for their turn. Their treatment in Vietnam is worth $2,500- $3,000 with high success rate.
A Cambodian girl T.Darika who was born with congenital “webbed” fingers and toes is very grateful to Vietnamese surgeons who performed a two-hour operation to separate the joined parts at the end of 2018. She now can write with the fingers.
According to the Medical Examination and Treatment Department’s statistics, the Southeast Asian country admitted more than 234,000 foreign patients in 2014 with over 26,000 inpatients and more than 300,000 international patients arriving in the country for medical services with 57,000 inpatients.
Foreign patients have been seeking dental services or heart, cosmetic surgeries, reproductive problems and cancer. Most of patients arriving in Vietnam for medical services are Vietnamese people abroad, Laotians, Cambodian, Japanese and South Korean.
Foreign patients have written good comments in Vietnam’s medical services, physicians and nurses. However, it’s regrettable that Vietnamese physicians’ skills and medicine sector are not widely popular in the globe. Health Minister Nguyen Thi Kim Tien pointed out that large hospitals have focused on techniques rather than improved services; accordingly, not many people in the world have known about the country’s medicine sector.
Apart from that, overloading continues to plague Vietnam’s major hospitals. Slight cases should be treated in small clinics so that physicians in large infirmaries can take heed to treatment for severe cases, said Minister Tien.
Needless to say, less overloaded hospitals are more attractive than crowded facilities in the eye of patients, she added.
Also she said, around 40,000 Vietnamese wealthy patients went abroad for treatment in 2018 spending $2 billion on medical services, a very big sum for a developing nation like Vietnam.
Vietnam has no medical marketing companies whereas Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand have established representative officers in Vietnam to persuade rich Vietnam patients to go to these countries for medical services, said Minister Tien.
In the next time, in order to attract more international patients for medical services in Vietnam, related agencies should popularize benefits and doctors’ good skills, cheap cost and high techniques.
The health sector now should take heed to quality improvement synchronously from grass-root medical institutions to large ones. On the other hand, it should invest in the state of the art machine and medical workers’ behaviors to retain patients.

By THANH SON – Translated by BAO LONG

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