• Land area                    : 331,691 sq km
  • Population                   : 84,200,000 (mid-2006)

Sources: U.N. Human Development Report 2006, United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific, Population Reference Bureau, Asian Development Bank Key Indicators Report, Yunnan Government.


  • Total population: 84,238,000.
  • Gross national income per capita (PPP international $): 3,010.00
  • Life expectancy at birth m/f (years): 69/74
  • Healthy life expectancy at birth m/f (years, 2002): 60/63
  • Probability of dying under five (per 1,000 live births): 19
  • Probability of dying between 15 and 60 years m/f (per 1,000 population): 195/119
  • Total expenditure on health per capita (Intl $, 2004): 184
  • Total expenditure on health as % of GDP (2004): 5.5
  • (Figures are for 2005 unless indicated)


The Ministry of Health is the government agency exercising state management in the field of health care, including preventive medicine, consultation and treatment, rehabilitation, traditional medicine, pharmaceuticals, hazardous effects of cosmetics to human health, food hygiene and safety, medical equipment and health facilities.

Organization of Health Services and Delivery Systems:

The health system in Viet Nam is a mixed public-private provider system, in which the public system still plays a key role in health care, especially in policy, prevention, research and training. The private sector has grown steadily since the ‘reform’ of the health sector in 1989, but is mainly active in outpatient care; inpatient care is provided essentially through the public sector.

The health care network is organized under state administrative units: central, provincial, district, communal and village level, with the Ministry of Health at the central level. In the public sector, there are 730 general hospitals, 103 specialized hospitals and 11,389 primary health centres. The selection of the grassroots health care network (including commune and district levels) as the foundation for people’s health care has yielded many achievements, especially contributing towards attainment of national health care goals for the entire population.

Health centres in communes provide primary health services including consultation, treatment of common diseases, maternal and child health care, family planning, and hygiene and health promotion. The total number of private facilities rose from 56,000 in 2001 to 65,000 in 2004. A total of 43 private hospitals account for 4.6% of the total number of hospitals nationwide, with their 3200 beds accounting for 13% of the total number of hospital beds. Of the private hospitals, six of which are funded wholly by foreign investment, 29 are general hospitals and 14 are specialist hospitals.

Health care is strengthened by national health programmes, especially those for important public health problems. For example, the tuberculosis control programme has made every effort over many years to maintain high DOTS coverage for 100% of the population, and has been evaluated highly by WHO.

The extended immunization programme is also considered a successful child health care intervention, resulting in high reduction rates for vaccine-preventable diseases and the elimination of polio, neonatal tetanus and leprosy, according to WHO definitions. However, current challenges facing the programme include vaccine maintenance, vaccination timeliness and safety, and insufficient newly developed vaccines to meet demand.

The HIV/AIDS control programme is one of the National Target Health Programmes for the period 2001-2005. After the project, more than 90% of state officials, members of popular organizations, servicemen and students, more than 80% of the urban population, and 70% of the rural and mountainous population should have a good knowledge of HIV/AIDS and should be ready to participate actively in HIV/AIDS interventions.


  • To reduce the adverse impact of communicable disease on health and social and economic status in Vietnam.

Medium-term Objectives:

  • Strengthening ability to detect, identify and respond rapidly to epidemic-prone and emerging infectious diseases.
  • To integrate communicable diseases surveillance system, health information system and specific diseases program.


  1. Regional institutes responsible for provinces in region.
  2. Centre for Preventive Medicine implements surveillance activities.
  3. District Preventive Medicine Team usually takes surveillance action in the field and clinic, hospital, it is important for the early warning systems in area.
  4. Urgent report for outbreaks: within 24 hours.
  5. Routine reports: weekly report, monthly report, annual report.

Future Plan (Strategy up to 2010):

  1. Electronic data transmission
  2. Standardize database network
  3. FETP Training
  4. Laboratory verification
  5. Improve communication


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