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Vietnam has been a model of innovation and development over the last few years, and the effect on healthcare has been profound, especially during the pandemic.

A new supplement published in BMJ Innovations looks at what Vietnam is doing right in its response to covid-19 and beyond.

 

 

The supplement, Healthcare innovation in Vietnam, gives prime examples of how innovative Vietnam has been in the face of the pandemic and how they are training the next generation of healthcare professionals. It also shares success stories of how early-stage start ups are transforming healthcare.

The special supplement and virtual event are kindly supported by the UK Government through the British Embassy in Hanoi and British Consulate General in Ho Chi Minh City (Vietnam).

 

 

 

 

 

 

Proactive response and innovative approaches to SARS-CoV-2 in Vietnam

Dr Le Van Tan, PhD. Head of Emerging Infections Group, Wellcome Trust Training Fellow | Oxford University Clinical Research Unit, Ho Chi Minh City, and colleagues

Vital sign monitoring using wearable devices in a Vietnamese Intensive Care Unit 

Associate Professor Louise C. Thwaites, Oxford University Clinical Research Unit, Hospital for Tropical Diseases, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, and colleagues

Case study: wearable remote monitoring for patients with covid-19 in low-resource settings

Associate Professor Louise C. Thwaites, Oxford University Clinical Research Unit, Hospital for Tropical Diseases, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, and colleagues

A digital marketplace to improve healthcare access and transparency in Vietnam

Beth Ann Lopez, Co-founder & CEO at Docosan | Harvard MPH, and colleagues

Vietnam and innovation in covid-19 testing

Dr Robyn Klingler-Vidra, Senior Lecturer in Political Economy at King’s College London, and colleagues

Innovations in Medical Education in Vietnam

Todd Pollack, Assistant Professor, Harvard Medical School, Country Director, HAIVN, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Centre, and colleagues

Special thanks to our editorial advisory board

  • Do Duy Cuong, Head of Tropical Disease Centre, Bach Mai Hospital
  • Nguyen Lan Hieu, Director, Hanoi Medical University Hospital
  • Le Cu Linh, Vice Dean, College of Health Sciences, Vin University
  • Todd Pollack, Assistant Professor, Harvard Medical School, Country Director, HAIVN, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Centre
  • Vu Huong, Technical Director, PATH Mekong
  • Vuong Thi Ngoc Lan, Dean, Faculty of Medicine, University of Medicine and Pharmacy at Ho Chi Minh City
  • Vuong Anh Duong, Deputy Director, Vietnam Administration of Medical Services
  • Nguyen Vu Trung, Vice Director, Administration of Science, Technology and Training

 

  • Nguyen Kieu Cuong, Chief of Party – USAID/Local Work Project, Institute of Population, Development and Health
  • Louise Thwaites, Associate Professor, Emerging Infections group at OUCRU
  • Benjamin Reid, Head of International, Nesta, UK
  • Tran Thanh Huong – Vice Director, National Cancer Institute, National Cancer Hospital
  • Tuan-Anh Vuong, Country Lead, Vietnam, BMJ Global Health Team, Chief Medical Officer, Hong Anh Medical Campus Project

BMJ Innovations Editorial Team

  • Helen Surana, Special Issue Editor
  • Ashley McKimm, Editor-in-Chief

Overview

Over the last 20 years, Vietnam’s economic growth has accelerated, and it is becoming known as a regional centre for development. The education system is seeing rapid improvement, and the tech sector is growing dramatically, with highly skilled workers. 

And healthcare is no exception  – innovation is everywhere in Vietnam, from high-level academic research to simple but highly effective schemes to provide remote healthcare.

We wanted to showcase all that, but it would be impossible to do so without shining a light on Vietnam’s response to covid-19. At the time of writing, the global distribution of vaccines is gathering pace. 

Still, in this special supplement, we focus on some of the innovations that have enabled Vietnam to keep its case numbers low and societal disruption minimal, despite the apparent risks of a local disaster.

Robyn Klinger-Vidra and colleagues outline the social and political environment that allowed innovative ideas that worked against the pandemic to flourish; Van le Tan and colleagues describe the healthcare interventions – from the field to the laboratory – that have fought the virus.

Away from the pandemic, we have Louise Thwaites and colleagues front the VITAL project run by OUCRU describing new innovations in critical care monitoring, and importantly their applicability. David Duong and colleagues take us through some exciting innovation in medical training – perhaps an area where countries like Vietnam can leapfrog more traditional medical establishments to train doctors for the 21st and 22nd century.

And to spotlight some of the work of Vietnam’s health tech entrepreneurs and software developers, we look at a new platform for patients to book appointments. We hope you enjoy this special supplement and are inspired and intrigued. 

BMJ Innovations features the most important research and emerging talent in digital health, medical devices and clinical practice from around the globe. The online journal encourages the adoption of innovative practices by health professionals with the latest, original research, early-stage innovation reports, and systemic and narrative reviews.

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Dr Ashley McKimm
Editor of BMJ Innovations