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Saturday, July 2, 2022

Ratio of health workers to 10,000 residents in HCMC lowest in Vietnam

The Saigon Times

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HCMC – The ratio of medical workers to 10,000 residents in HCMC is only 2.31, the lowest in the country and much lower than the country’s average, at 7, said the director of the municipal Department of Health, Tang Chi Thuong.

At a question-and-answer session of the fourth session of the municipal People’s Council on December 8, Thuong said the number of medical workers who resigned during the height of the Covid-19 pandemic in the city had been high as they were exhausted after long months of hard work and their incomes were lower than expected, the local media reported.

The Department of Health has proposed many solutions to the municipal government to retain medical workers.

Specifically, the city should support medical workers with VND4-6 million each per month. Since 2015, the city has supported them, but the support has been modest, at below VND1 million per month.

In addition, the city should attract human resources at the medical stations of communes and wards. The Department of Health has suggested that new graduates of medical schools work as interns at medical stations for 12 months instead of at hospitals for 18 months. They will be supported with an amount that is 1.5 times higher than the minimum wage.

If the proposal is approved, 500 doctors will be stationed at medical stations per year, Thuong noted.

The city will also provide more employees to medical stations. Under the prevailing regulations, each medical station must have five to 10 employees. However, they cannot deal with the workload in some communes and wards in HCMC with 170,000 residents.

For the long term, the National Assembly should weigh amending the regulation on the number of medical workers at stations based on the population. At first, the HCMC Department of Health proposed increasing the maximum number of medical workers at a station from 10 to 20.

Thuong also highlighted the pandemic situation in the city, saying that from October 1, the number of new Covid cases, cases getting worse and deaths fell sharply over the previous period. However, these numbers have risen since October 20.

At present, the city is monitoring and treating over 85,000 Covid cases, including 66,500 cases at home; 5,300 cases at the facilities of communes, wards and towns; 11,700 cases at level-two hospitals and 1,800 cases at level-three hospitals.

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