In response to the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, the U.S. has made available nearly $274 million in emergency health and humanitarian assistance to help the world's most at-risk 25 countries better combat the pandemic. As part of this, USAID has provided 3 million USD to support Vietnam’s efforts.
As one of the leading USAID partners in the area of infection control and prevention (IPC), and with more than 15 years experience working to improve the health system in Vietnam, The Partnership for Health Advancement in Vietnam was awarded 700,000 USD over a 6-month period to collaborate with Vietnam National Children’s Hospital. The project will support training and technical assistance to hospitals across the country in preparation for COVID-19 with a focus on strengthening IPC to reduce in-hospital transmission and protect health workers.
The need to strengthen hospital IPC is now even more urgent in the setting of the expanding COVID-19 pandemic. The experience in the world has demonstrated the significant risk of in-hospital transmission of the virus to other patients and to healthcare workers. In Vietnam, as of 1 April 2020, there have been 212 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and 0 deaths. Vietnam has had a proactive and well-coordinated response. To avoid potential overload at central hospitals, the Vietnam Ministry of Health (MOH) issued guidelines to expand services at health facilities and to triage patients for treatment at different levels of the hospital system; e.g. mild cases can be treated at the provincial or district level while more severe cases are referred to higher level facilities. The MOH issued guidelines on the prevention and management of COVID-19 in Vietnam. Building on the ongoing work and partnership with VNCH, HAIVN will support Ministry of Health efforts to train health workers and prepare hospitals for COVID-19.