Laos, Vietnam strengthen health sector cooperation

By Xayxana Leukai
March 15, 2013

The Ministries of Health of Laos and Vietnam signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) in Vientiane yesterday on strengthening their cooperation in the health sector.

The MOU was signed by Lao Health Minister Prof. Dr Eksavang Vongvichit and Vietnam’s Minister of Health Associate Prof. Dr Nguyen Thi Kim Tien.

The MOU aims to further strengthen the existing traditional friendship and cooperation between Laos and Vietnam in the field of health, for the mutual benefit of both countries.

Under the agreement, the two ministries will organise exchange visits by medical professionals as well as health workers and students through study visits and short- and long-term trainings. These will target the development of scientific programmes and research projects, while encouraging business cooperation and investment in health, including the production of pharmaceuticals, medical equipment, and vaccines.

Vietnam’s Ministry of Health will continue to perform clinical activities for Lao citizens under the current agreement and the provisions of the Vietnamese government. The ministry will also continue to send experienced medical professionals to Laos to provide technical and medical professional support for Lao health staff at the request of the Lao Ministry of Health. Both parties recognise the legitimacy of medical and pharmacy practice certificates, medical examinations and treatment licences.

From 2012-2020, medical and pharmaceutical institutions in Vietnam will continue their cooperation and support for Laos in training health workers at all levels.

The two parties will strengthen their cooperation in health promotion, epidemic prevention, technical support for cross-border disease control, food safety, maternal and child health, nutrition, health communication and education. They will also boost international cooperation on HIV/AIDS prevention across their shared border, especially among mobile populations and communities.

The two ministries will continue to implement agreed activities under the Border Health Quarantine Agreement signed between Laos and Vietnam in 2001.

Laos and Vietnam will enhance exchanges of information and cooperation in the fields of training, scientific research and professional exchange in non-communicable disease control, and towards creating a healthy environment in schools.

In addition, the two ministries will strengthen their cooperation in drug testing, drug quality control, counterfeit drugs, food safety and traditional medicine.

The Vietnamese Ministry of Health will provide treatment for senior officials of the Lao Ministry of Health at hospitals in Vietnam.

In addition, Vietnam will receive Lao delegations undertaking study visits, research and experience exchange in the areas of hospital management, hospital financial management, public health management, medical inspection, planning and international cooperation.

Vietnam’s Ministry of Health will also continue to assist with training and technology transfer for medical staff in Laos in the form of bilateral cooperation between the two ministries’ health facilities. This will take place in the fields of surgery, anaethesiology, emergency treatement, obstetrics and gynaecology, paediatrics, drug tests, dentistry and other professional fields.

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