Vietnam is a densely populated agricultural country that has experienced rapid economic progress in the past two decades. The Vietnamese Ministry of Health (MOH) has made significant efforts to step up health care services to keep pace with the needs of a growing, young population, placing a priority on improving family planning services. To help achieve this goal, in 1991, the MOH invited EngenderHealth to collaborate, making us one of the first U.S.-based reproductive health organizations to work in Vietnam.
EngenderHealth’s first collaboration with the MOH involved assisting the country’s health authorities develop National Standards and Guidelines for infection prevention, counseling, and sterilization services (tubal ligation and no-scalpel vasectomy). We also helped train providers to adapt these Standards and Guidelines. Since then, our work has included:
Expanding Reproductive Health Services
EngenderHealth worked with the MOH and a variety of local and international partners in Vietnam (including Pathfinder International, Ipas, Save the Children, and the United Nations Population Fund) to improve the breadth and quality of important reproductive health and family planning services for women, including access to a broader range of contraception, more comprehensive counseling, and maternal health care. EngenderHealth helped to improve the management of maternity complications by, training of providers, facility upgrades, and quality improvement initiatives including standardizing care.
Improving the Quality of Care
EngenderHealth worked with local partners in Vietnam to adapt our quality improvement approaches for the Vietnamese health system. The application of COPE®—EngenderHealth’s low-cost tool to improve service quality through self-assessment—has been particularly successful. EngenderHealth introduced COPE to service providers and managers throughout the country and at the Hanoi Institute of Public Health, which is responsible for national training in quality assurance. Through these activities, EngenderHealth has increased the capacity of Vietnamese providers to give their clients quality care and improving the Vietnamese people’s overall health and well-being.