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Int'l experts discuss solutions to improve sustainability of health sector

Local and international health policymakers and experts from health management agencies, research institutes and service providers have discussed solutions to strengthen Vietnam’s health system sustainability and resilience at a workshop.

The March 17 workshop was part of the Global Summit of the Partnership for Health System Sustainability and Resilience. It was coorganised by AstraZeneca Vietnam and the Health Strategy and Policy Institute (HSPI).

HSPI researchers presented their newly published a report on the sustainability and resilience of the Vietnamese health system, with crucial policy recommendations to enhance benefits for Vietnamese people.

Dr. Tran Van Thuan, Vice Minister of Health, said via a video message: “Vietnam has worked tirelessly to enhance its health system, aiming towards equality, efficiency, quality and sustainability, and meeting the people’s healthcare needs.”

“However, the health system is facing many challenges with the double burden of diseases and an aging population,” Thuan added.

“It needs to be continuously improved to ensure its sustainable development and ability to respond to future difficulties and challenges."

Nitin Kapoor, chairman and general director of AstraZeneca Vietnam, said: “We hope the Partnership for Health System Sustainability and Resilience (PHSSR) will provide a platform to both highlight Vietnam’s best practice in COVID-19 response to the world, and allow the Vietnamese health system to look within and identify room for further enhancements.”

Dr. Tran Thi Mai Oanh, director of HSPI and PHSSR Vietnam lead researcher, said: “We are pleased to be among the first countries in the world to pioneer the London School of Economics’ new framework on health system sustainability and resilience.”

“It is our hope that our evidence-based report will provide a deeper and more comprehensive view of Vietnam’s health system according to the five domains: governance, financing, workforce, medicines and technology, and service delivery, and that our proposed solutions will inform upcoming high-level health policy discussions and agendas to create meaningful changes.”

Prof. Alistair McGuire, London School of Economics, joining virtually from the UK, emphasised the important role that Vietnam plays in the global PHSSR initiative, and hoped that the project could soon be expanded to other Asian countries.

During the summit session, Swedish Ambassador Ann Måwe and British Deputy Ambassador Marcus Winsley emphasised the vital role of cross-border cooperation during COVID-19 and beyond. Other speakers echoed and contributed to the HSPI’s recommendations to continue prioritising grassroots healthcare development and primary healthcare, and initiatives to achieve universal health coverage and increase public participation in health policy development and monitoring./.