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Wednesday,  Sep 20,2017,19:56 (GMT+7)

Hospitals set to share test results early next month

Hoang Nhung
Tuesday,  Jun 27,2017,23:16 (GMT+7)
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Hospitals set to share test results early next month

Hoang Nhung

HCMC – The Ministry of Health said 38 hospitals under its management will share medical test results from early next month to reduce expenses for patients who are often required to redo all tests when they switch hospitals.

According to the Medical Services Administration under the ministry, about 250 million biochemical, 200 million blood and 25 million microbiological tests are conducted at hospitals a year, an annual increase of 10%.

About VND237.5 billion (US$10.45 million) can be saved a year if 1% of the tests, or 4.75 million tests, are cut, said Luong Ngoc Khue, director of the Medical Services Administration.

Therefore, an approved roadmap allows test results to be shared among special-grade and first-grade hospitals from January 1 next year, among hospitals within a province by 2020 and by all hospitals across the country by 2025.

However, according to the Medical Services Administration, tests results at different hospitals can be different, with the quality of tests done by central and provincial-level hospitals better than those at lower levels.

The ministry has issued test criteria for laboratories and a list of tests which can be shared among hospitals. The country currently has over 50 laboratories meeting ISO 15189 standards, with 50% of them endorsed by the ministry and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Dr. Vo Xuan Son, director of ExSon International Clinic, said the sharing of medical tests can help reduce unnecessary tests and thus stop bothering patients but if it is considered a tool for stopping doctors from prescribing tests, it would affect the quality of medical examinations and treatments.

Thong Nhat Hospital’s director, Professor Nguyen Duc Cong, suggested the ministry make clear what tests can be shared, and that ultrasound scans and imaging tests not be allowed for sharing because their quality is decided by the qualifications of those carrying out those tests.

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