The hospitals have been taking a more assertive stance in acquiring high-tech training as they are also aware that financial subsidies from the State will be reduced in the future.
Cho Ray Hospital, for example, in HCM City has worked with the provincial Nghe An Friendship General Hospital to provide training in advanced surgical techniques to treat laryngeal cancer.
Dr Tran Minh Truong, Deputy Head of Cho Ray Hospital, said the surgery had been performed on 19 patients at Nghe An Friendship over the last year.
Doctors at Nghe An Friendship have been able to treat bronchial stenosis from scars, and an abscess caused by a choking incident with a fishbone.
In the past, the patients would have been referred to hospitals in Hanoi for treatment.
Thu Duc District Hospital last year sent its doctors to leading hospitals, including Thong Nhat Hospital in Tan Binh District, to receive training in high-tech treatments such as catheter-based cerebrovascular intervention.
As of June 9, the doctors had used the treatment on one patient who had a partial seizure on the left side of the body. The patient will be discharged from the hospital after three days of treatment.
Dr Luong Ngoc Khue, Head of the city’s Medical Examination and Treatment Department, said that residents in outlying areas now had far better access to high-tech treatment.
The use of high-tech treatments at more district and provincial hospitals in recent years has helped reduce overloading at major city-level hospitals.
In 2010, the Ministry of Health told central and leading city-level hospitals to offer more high-tech training to doctors at provincial and district hospitals.
Since then, the central-level and city-level hospitals have seen a reduction in patient transfers from smaller hospitals.
The rate has fallen by 98.5% in patients with heart-related diseases, 97% for cancer patients and 99% for obstetrics.
A report from the HCM City’s Health Department found that the number of outpatients at district hospitals last year increased to 26% from 2 percent in 2014.
There was also a 19% increase of inpatients, compared to 5% in 2014.