Health Innovation Network launched in Vietnam

November 21, 2023 | 10:08
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The Vietnam Young Physicians Association (VYPA) and AstraZeneca Vietnam hosted a ceremony in Ho Chi Minh City on November 19 to launch the Health Innovation Network and kick-start its first programme called Digital Lung Health.

With the approval of the Ministry of Health (MoH), the Ho Chi Minh City People's Committee, and the Standing Committee of the Vietnam Youth Union, the Health Innovation Network has been jointly developed by the VYPA and AstraZeneca Vietnam.

Health Innovation Network launched in Vietnam
At the launch on November 19

The Health Innovation Network is a collective effort between individuals and healthcare organisations, contributing intellectual resources and expertise to effectively harness the advancements of Industry 4.0 in the area of healthcare. The initiative is coordinated with the Ho Chi Minh City Society of Asthma, Allergy and Clinical Immunology.

The network aims to strengthen the digital health capabilities of over 3,000 physicians by introducing applications, AI-powered diagnostic tools, and telemedicine platforms.

It also targets the application of digital technologies to provide free screenings for lung diseases and lung cancer, aiming to identify underlying disease risks for 50,000 people in Ho Chi Minh City. This includes support for respiratory function measurements for Asthma and COPD diagnoses and low-dose computed tomography for lung cancer diagnoses.

At the launch ceremony, Dr. Ha Anh Duc, chairman of VYPA stated, "Lung cancer and other lung diseases have emerged as prominent global causes of mortality. Nevertheless, when identified in their early stages, the prospects for effective treatment are significantly improved. Consequently, this screening programme assumes paramount importance."

Nitin Kapoor, chairman and general director of AstraZeneca said, "As a global biopharmaceutical company, we strive to ensure that every individual has equitable and affordable access to the life-changing healthcare solutions they need, regardless of where they live. Today, witnessing the successful launch of the Health Innovation Network, I believe we are progressing in the right direction towards the realisation of a sustainable, innovative, and highly efficient healthcare system that will bring significant benefits to the people."

According to the MoH, Vietnam is one of the many countries that is experiencing rapid population ageing worldwide. The population aged 60 and above accounted for 11.9 per cent of the total in 2019, yet by 2050, this figure is projected to exceed 25 per cent. Concurrently, the country is also facing an increase in non-communicable diseases (NCDs) such as cancer, cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, and chronic respiratory illnesses, which are major burdens in terms of morbidity and mortality.

Therefore, alongside disease control, the prevention and control of NCDs is prioritised in Vietnam's healthcare policies, in which scientific research plays a crucial role in providing information and evidence for policy development and the discovery of the most effective interventions.

Health Innovation Network launched in Vietnam
People joining a complimentary medical screening and health consultation programme at the launch

On the same day, a significant number of individuals from various age groups residing in different districts gathered at Nguyen Hue pedestrian street in Ho Chi Minh City for a complimentary medical screening and health consultation. The event also provided advice on utilising telehealth applications. Over 150 doctors from reputable hospitals were present to offer their expertise and guidance to the attendants.

From December, the offering will be expanded nationwide, targeting five major cities, namely Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City, Danang, Can Tho, and Thua Thien Hue. Over 60 hospitals are expected to participate with a primary focus on screening for respiratory diseases, including lung cancer, for over 100,000 people.

AstraZeneca is a global, science-led biopharmaceutical company that focuses on the discovery, development, and commercialisation of prescription medicines in oncology, rare diseases, and biopharmaceuticals. Based in Cambridge, UK, it operates in over 100 countries and its innovative medicines are used by millions of patients worldwide.

As a foreign-invested enterprise with over 600 employees, AstraZeneca Vietnam is investing $360 million into the country from 2020 to 2030, with a focus on reducing the burden of disease, uplifting the domestic biopharmaceutical research, development, and manufacturing capabilities, and developing local talent.

Over the last three decades in Vietnam, AstraZeneca has run several impactful programmes in collaboration with the MoH and other healthcare partners to promote disease awareness, prevention, and early detection.

Among them are the Healthy Lung Programme to improve the quality of outpatient management of asthma, COPD, and lung cancer, the Young Health initiative to prevent and reduce NCD risk behaviours among young people, the CaReMe drive to transform the cardiovascular, renal, and metabolic care ecosystem, the Love your Lungs campaign to raise awareness about screening for the early detection of lung cancer, and the Health System Sustainability and Resilience offering to holistically reinforce the Vietnamese health system so that it can guard against future risks.

AstraZeneca Vietnam and HSAACI enter cooperation agreement AstraZeneca Vietnam and HSAACI enter cooperation agreement

AstraZeneca Vietnam and the Society of Asthma, Allergy and Clinical Immunology of Ho Chi Minh City (HSAACI) unveiled a comprehensive strategic cooperation memorandum on October 2 that aims to help medical and community healthcare workers to manage and treat respiratory diseases.

Healthy Lung Programme marks milestones Healthy Lung Programme marks milestones

A conference on healthy lung was held on November 3 to mark the sustainable collaboration between Vietnam’s Ministry of Health and AstraZeneca in enhancing the management quality for asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).

AstraZeneca Vietnam partners with Can Tho city to improve health services AstraZeneca Vietnam partners with Can Tho city to improve health services

AstraZeneca Vietnam and Can Tho city officials signed an agreement on November 14 to work together on health projects and create a lasting healthcare system.

By Bich Thuy

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