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Thanks to significant economic reforms over the last two decades, Vietnam has experienced positive economic change, rapid growth of the private sector and an ongoing shift to fiscal decentralization. However, deep inequities remain, especially for ethnic minority groups and remote/rural communities. Many Vietnamese continue to live on the edge of poverty and are at risk due to vulnerability to illness, natural disaster and environmental degradation.

In 2003, the government spent just US$7 per capita on health. As with many other developing countries, there is also a shortage of health personnel, with only one nurse per 1,785 people.

Vietnam Nurses Association (VNA)

VNA is a national association representing nurses, medical technicians and midwives employed by the Government of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam. CNA has provided funding to VNA since 1999, with a focus on institutional capacity-building and nursing education. The Association of Registered Nurses of Newfoundland and Labrador (ARNNL) has partnered with VNA since 2005 to provide technical assistance in areas related to nursing regulation and association-building, on an in-kind basis. VNA, through this partnership, has achieved results in policy advocacy, nursing regulation, nursing leadership and institutional capacity, as follows:

  • contributed to establishing the first university program for nursing in Vietnam;
  • developed standards of practice and common competencies for nurses;
  • implemented a pilot project to demonstrate nurses’ role in HIV/AIDS prevention and care;
  • improved relationship with the ministry of health, leading to increased and more effective policy input;
  • established chief nurse positions in provincial health bureaus; and
  • increased nursing skills in health education and nursing research.

The support from both CNA and ARNNL has been invaluable to VNA’s strategic decision-making.

Contact information:

Vietnam Nurses Association
3rd floor, D building, 138A Giang Vo Street
Ba Dinh District
Hanoi City, Vietnam
Tel: + 84-4 3726 0041
Website: www.hoidieuduong.org.vn