Acting Minsiter of Health Dao Hong Lan

Reporting on Resolution 30/2021 released on July 28, 2021 on Covid-19 prevention and control policies, Acting Minister of Health Dao Hong Lan said Vietnam has achieved the goal of controlling Covid-19, bringing the country to the new normal with continued socio-economic development.

To protect the achievements, the government has proposed that the National Assembly continue to extend the validity of the drug circulation registration certificates in accordance with Resolution 30 for one more year (until December 31, 2023).

The extension will not affect the quality, safety and efficiency of drugs as the drugs have been circulating for many years in Vietnam and many countries, including those that strictly control drugs.

If the drug certificates cannot be extended regularly, this will affect enterprises and the supply of drugs for medical examination and treatment in all specialties.

The government is also seeking the National Assembly’s permission to continue to apply specific and exceptional policies on medical examination and treatment, drugs, vaccines and medical equipment. 

The medical facilities that receive Covid-19 patients, and medical examination and treatment from a distance should be allowed to continue.

According to Lan, some drugs, materials, chemicals and biological products bought with state money and donated for Covid-19 prevention and control are likely not to be used up before their expiry dates, because there are no Covid-19 patients in some places. 

These include biological products for Realtime RT- PCR as the testing strategy has changed.

She said that leaders of hospitals and medical examination establishments now hesitate to procure medical equipment and drugs following the recent embezzlement cases in the healthcare sector, which led to the drug shortage.

Examining the government’s report, chair of the National Assembly’s Social Committee Nguyen Thuy Anh said that special policies were effective, and the mobilization of resources and vaccine diplomacy created favorable conditions for the health sector to ensure sufficient numbers of vaccines, medicine and medical equipment for pandemic prevention and control. 

However, there are some problems in the procurement of medical equipment, materials, chemicals and testing kits.

The management of Covid-19 treatment drugs sometimes is not strict enough, and some serious mistakes in medical equipment procurement have been found. Localities still don’t have solutions to deal with leftover vaccines, drugs and chemicals.

Tran Thuong