At 17:30 on 1st August 2021, at the meeting between Minister of Health, the City Party Committee, People’s Committee of HCMC, Department of Health of HCMC and leaders of five private hospitals in Ho Chi Minh City, FV Hospital proposed to provide vaccination for 10,000 people/day, and at the same time as presenting the capacity for treating Covid-19 patients with the “split hospital” model implemented at FV.
Accordingly, reporting at this important meeting, Ms Pham Thi Thanh Mai (COO of FV Hospital) confirmed: “Currently, FV is implementing vaccination for nearly 5,000 French citizens and their relatives in Southern Vietnam, and simultaneously volunteering to participate in the vaccination campaign for people in Ho Chi Minh City under the appeal and assignment of the Department of Health. Ms Mai emphasised that FV has equipped a cold storage system that has been tested and certified by the Pasteur Institute of Ho Chi Minh City, which can concurrently store 800,000 doses of Astra-Zeneca vaccine, 200,000 doses of Moderna vaccine and 600,000 doses of Pfizer. Currently, with only 3 nurses, 1 doctor and a group of administrative staff, FV Hospital can deliver 800 doses per day. Thus, with a workforce of more than 100 nurses with vaccination certificates, FV Hospital can organise vaccination for up to 10,000 people in a day at FV Hospital and mobile vaccination stations”. This means that, if working 7 days a week, FV can vaccinate about 250,000 people/month, contributing to Ho Chi Minh City efforts to speed up the vaccination progress for cities population, in accordance with the spirit of the Official Letter No. 6118/BYT-DP of the Minister of Health on mobilising state-run and private health resources to the maximum, organising vaccination for all cases aged 18 and over in Ho Chi Minh City.
Therefore, the representative of FV Hospital proposed to the Minister of Health, leaders of Ho Chi Minh City, and the Department of Health allow FV to comprehensively participate in the Covid-19 vaccination campaign.
Simultaneously with the vaccination for the French citizens community, FV actively participates in the vaccination campaign for HCMC people under assignment by Department of Health
Ultra-low storage system for vaccines at FV Hospital
During the meeting, Ms Mai also proposed to the Minister to allow FV Hospital to collect fees for vaccination services; the reason is that FV is a private healthcare facility, it has to mobilise its own budget to purchase a huge amounts of equipment for vaccination activities, including the ultra-low storage system and modern cold storage for vaccine preservation; pay salaries to doctors and nurses and expenses for ancillary activities. In addition, FV also had to suspend the activities of some other departments to prioritise personnel for the extremely urgent vaccination mission. The collection of fees is a necessary condition to help FV balance the budget in the general context of difficulties.
In addition, based on the spirit of Resolution 21 of the Government and the guidance of the Ministry of Health in encouraging all localities, businesses and units to participate in the search and import of Covid-19 vaccines, a representative of FV said that through diplomatic relations, FV Hospital had a source to purchase vaccines, FV proposed to actively negotiate, purchase and import vaccines with its own financial resources. By this way, Vietnam in general and Ho Chi Minh City in particular will have an additional large source of vaccines for people can voluntarily participate in the vaccination campaign with their personal financial ability, thus a way to contribute to reducing the burden on the state budget.
At the meeting, Ms Pham Thi Thanh Mai also reported on how to operate “split hospital” model of FV to receive and treat positive Covid-19 patients. Specifically, in addition to receipt and treatment for non-Covid-19 patients, FV is utilising 63 beds for treatment of positive Covid-19 patients requiring no ventilators, and 11 beds for treatment of Covid-19 patients requiring special care. The A&E department also operates under the “split hospital” model to receive and provide emergency treatment for non-Covid-19 patients and positive Covid-19 patients. FV will expand its capacity to receive and treat Covid-19 patients if needed.
FV has received and treated Covid-19 patients
Responding to the FV reports and recommendations, Assoc.Prof PhD.Luong Ngoc Khue – Director of Medical Services Administration (Ministry of Health) highly appreciated the initiative of FV Hospital in assisting the Government during the epidemic prevention and control as well as is proactive investment in facilities and professional human resources to carry out Covid-19 treatment and vaccination. The Ministry will consider the proposal and soon have an official direction for FV to participate in the extremely urgent vaccination mission. The Director emphasised that the split hospital model was highly appreciated by the Minister, this is a model that can be replicated in other healthcare facilities.
FV has operated the “split hospital” model to receive and treat Covid-19 patients
Regarding the situation of Covid-19 Real-time PCR testing at FV Hospital, Dr Do Trong Khanh – Medical Director of FV Hospital said that from April 2020 to the end of July 2021, FV had performed approximately 46,000 tests, identified 378 positive cases of Covid-19 in the community. FV Hospital is still providing this service. Simultaneously, FV Hospital is also implementing a mobile Covid-19 PCR testing model at many stations in Ho Chi Minh City and surrounding provinces under the approval and encouragement of the Ministry of Health.