Social News 11/3

Source: Pano feed

Legal doubts over plan to seize and sell traffic violation vehicles

Government legal experts have cast doubt on whether traffic authorities can sell vehicles confiscated because of a breach in alcohol laws or misuse of designated roadways.

Tran The Quan, deputy head of the Department of Legal and Administrative Reform, has problems with a National Traffic Safety Committee proposal to sell confiscated vehicles of drunken drivers, or motorbikes and bicycles using expressways that prohibit their access.

Quan said the plan needs more thought, particularly as violators may be using transport borrowed from another person.

“This proposal is not very fair,” Quan said. “If a crime is committed using a stolen of borrowed vehicle, the vehicle is returned to the rightful owner. And even in the event of a driver being drunk, or driving a motorbike illegally on an expressway, no actual crime has been committed, but rather a traffic violation.”

Quan suggested stiffer fines, set at the value of the vehicle, might be a better option.

The National Traffic Safety Committee has proposed confiscation of vehicles where the driver fails a blood-alcohol test and exceeds a measure of 0.08, equivalent to six beers consumed in the space of one hour. Motorbikes and bicycles using expressways should also be confiscated, rather than merely impounded.

The proposal would see confiscated vehicles sold at auction and the proceeds given to the poor.

Nearly 700 students compete in national contest on science and engineering

The 2015 national science and engineering fair (VISEF) was launched by the Ministry of Education and Training (MOET) in Bac Ninh province on March 3.

This year’s competition has attracted the participation of 371 students from 30 provinces and cities in the north (from Thua Thien Hue northward) who are presenting 205 projects in poster format from March 8 to10 in Bac Ninh.

Meanwhile, 306 students from 31 provinces and cities in the south (from Da Nang southward) will present 180 projects in Dong Thap province from March 15 to 17.

The 2015 contest has attracted a total of 385 projects from 677 students, which were selected from more than 5,000 projects in provincial level competitions, an increase of 86 projects compared to 2014.

The projects focus on fields including animal science, social science and behaviour, biochemistry, cell and molecular biology, chemistry, computer science, engineering and biotechnology, and environmental sciences among others.

Candidates will build reports on their research and present their projects in poster format to the jury. Shortlisted candidates can register to compete at the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair (Intel ISEF), the world’s largest international pre-college science competition.

The national contest on science and engineering for high school students has been held annually by the MOET since the 2011-2012 school year, aiming to encourage students to study science and technology and apply their knowledge in solving real life problems.

Tan Hoa-Lo Gom Canal less polluted after cleanup

The cleanup of Tan Hoa-Lo Gom Canal is almost finished, thus improving the living conditions of citizens in nearly 100 residential areas along the canal which was once heavily polluted.

At a meeting with the city government last Saturday, the management board of the HCMC Urban Upgrade Project said 98% of the workload had been completed and that a ceremony would be organized on April 5 to mark the completion of the project.

Major components of the project in districts 6, 11, Tan Binh and Tan Phu have been done, including 2,617 meters of sewers, 12 bridges and 10 km of road. In addition, trees have been planted to create green scenery along the canal.

Work started four years ago on the VND2 trillion (US$93.7 million) project to improve the living environment for the residential areas stretching 7.5 kilometers along the canal. According to environment experts, together with the Nhieu Loc-Thi Nghe Canal which has also been rehabilitated, the Tan Hoa-Lo Gom Canal rehabilitation project will make the streets linking districts 5, 6, 11, Tan Binh and Tan Phu wider and more beautiful.

The management board of the HCMC Urban Upgrade Project forecast land and house prices in the canal basin would increase as the project would help reduce flooding and pollution there.

The project is part of the Urban Upgrade Project in Vietnam which benefits HCMC, Can Tho, Nam Dinh and Haiphong, and has been implemented from 2004 to 2014 with total capital of US$382.5 million. Of the amount, US$266.7 billion is from the World Bank and VND4 trillion from the four localities.

After ten years of implementation, the project has benefited over six million people in the four localities.

HCMC should increase capacity to treat toxic wastes: experts

The volume of toxic waste discharged a day in Ho Chi Minh City is estimated to reach 300-600 tons this year but the city has been able to treat about 20 percent of this waste’s volume. Experts said that local authorities should further invest in treatment facilities to prevent worse environmental pollution.

According to the city Department of Natural Resources and Environment, poisonous waste volume will highly increase this year. This situation had been anticipated for many years ago but the city’s treatment facilities have not been upgraded appropriately.

Businesses had to pay as high as VND40 million (US$1,874) for the collection and treatment of a ton of harmful waste sometimes in 2012-2013. The price for an industrial and household waste ton is VND2.5-12 million.

This is because a severe shortage of units who collect and treat wastes. At that time, the city sped up calling social investment in this field but the number of investors has been very limited so far.

Recently, HCMC has approved a policy to build two toxic waste treatment plants but they have not come into operation so far.

Many waste collection and treatment establishments said that the city has no safe landfill site for toxic waste. A large volume of this waste type can not be burned, it must be buried. Besides ash from the burned waste has no way to move out and has still stayed at production units.

If this situation prolongs, the wastes will be dumped into the environment.

The city has about 30 toxic waste treatment establishments. Each of them can handle only few tons a day, except a plant under HCMC Urban Environment Company Limited which can treat 21 tons a day.

The company’s director said that the facility capacity will be increased to 40 tons a day. But it will be able to treat a part of the total volume of harmful waste discharged in the city a day.

In addition, if the city does not build a landfill site, it will be difficult for the company to ensure a safe post-treatment phase, he added.

Only about 20 percent of toxic wastes in HCMC have been collected and treated. Environment experts said that limited treatment capacity and exorbitant fees have forced many businesses to seek other ways to handle their waste. For instance, they can discharge it into the environment or mix toxic waste with industrial or household wastes to pay lower treatment fees.

In fact, a large volume of noxious waste has been dumped along streets in Districts 7, 8, 12, Binh Chanh and Binh Tan.

Therefore, If the city does not invest appropriately in treatment facilities, the city’s environment will not be improved as per it target for 2015, experts warned.

Second Color Me Run set for next month

The Color Me Run race will be organized for the second time in HCMC, Danang and Hanoi in April, June and September respectively.

Unlike other sporting events, the Color Me Run features a five-kilometer race in which runners are showered with color powder at checkpoints along the route.

Participants will be greeted at the finish line with a music performance by American rapper T-pain, the pop group GRL and Singapore DJs Atran and Manfred.

With the message “We’ll be united”, the event is expected to be a weekend festive day for people to gather with friends and families. The HCMC run is slated for April 11 and the Danang event for June 27 while a specific date for the Hanoi competition is not yet fixed.

For more information, visit the Facebook page at

Registration for the HCMC run is open until March 27 at with a joining fee of VND550,000 for each individual. Meanwhile, the participation fee for individuals at the Danang contest is VND250,000 each from March 2 to April 12, and VND300,000 from April 13 to June 7. The fee for the Hanoi competition is not available at

Kids get free surgery for congenital defects

Fifty Vietnamese youth, from two months to 20 years old, will be offered free screening and congenital cleft lip and palate surgery at the University Medical Centre in HCM City’s District 5 beginning March 14.

The seven-day programme will be carried out by the University Medical Centre of HCM City in co-operation with the US-based non-governmental organisation Operation Smile.

Coach collides with truck, kills 1

A 28-year-old man was killed and two others were injured early yesterday after a coach collided with a truck.

The accident took place on a stretch of the National Highway 1A in Mekong Delta Tien Giang Province’s Nhi Quy Commune.

The two injured persons include the truck driver.

The provincial Traffic Safety Committee revealed that the truck driver did not give way to the coach driver, who was initially held responsible for the accident.

The accident occurred when the truck entered the national highway from a local road and crashed into the coach, the committee stated.

The accident brought traffic to a standstill for few hours. The police are investigating the case.

Lao Cai reports more foot-and-mouth disease outbreaks

The foot-and-mouth disease resurfaced in the northern mountainous province of Lao Cai earlier this month.

The latest outbreaks were reported in Bat Xat district’s Trinh Tuong commune, where more than 65 infected pigs and cattle weighing more than three tonnes were culled.

The initial cause of the outbreak of the disease was established to be the earlier epidemic.

The provincial authority has sent vaccines and chemicals to sterilise the infected breeding areas.

Along with the vaccination of all cattle in the area, the local units have also stopped the transportation and slaughtering of cattle with high-risk infectious diseases in the neighbouring communes.

The provincial veterinary department will co-ordinate with the People’s Committees of districts and cities across the province to strengthen the inspection and monitoring of the disease to control its spread.

They will also reinforce units to check transportation, slaughtering and smuggling of products to ensure safe food for customers.

More illegal brokers arrested at Huong Pagoda Festival

Thirteen more illegal brokers, who were the main cause for the public chaos at the Huong Pagoda Festival in Ha Noi’s Ung Hoa District, have been held, the police said.

With their detention, the number of brokers held in the case has gone up to 33.

Lieutenant Colonel Le Kim Dong, head of the Ha Noi Police Department’s crime prevention unit, said that the illegal brokers were caught while trying to follow cars carrying tourists to the pagoda, to convince them to buy entrance tickets or tickets for boating and cable cars.

Twelve motorbikes and mobile phones belonging to the brokers were seized.

Dong added that the brokers usually worked in groups and overcharged visitors for services, causing chaos and disorder, ever since the festival began on the sixth day of the first lunar month (February 24).

The brokers will have to pay fines between VND100,000 and VND300,000 (US$4.7-14.1), and their vehicles will be seized for two months.

About 16,000 visitors have attended the Huong Pagoda Festival, one of the largest of its kind in Viet Nam, this year. The pagoda, located about 60km from downtown Ha Noi, is considered to be Buddha’s land and is always very crowded, with people elbowing one another to make their way through.

This year’s festival will run till April.

Da Nang works on major power upgrade

The National Power Transformer Corporation will invest VND 343 billion (US$16 million) on a 220kV-transformer station in Ngu Hanh Son District and a 220kV power line from Da Nang to Ngu Hanh Son.

The station and line will be upgraded from the current 110kV station and line in District 3.

So far, site clearance and financial compensation for locals have been completed, and a contractor has been shosen. The station is expected to completed and put into operation in the second quarter this year.

The project will help Da Nang to fulfil its socio-economic targets by 2020 and become a economic hub in central Viet Nam.

Experts say more doctors need in-service training

In-service training is critical for enhancing doctors’ capacity in emergency medicine, leading experts in healthcare stressed at a conference held yesterday in the northern Quang Ninh Province’s Ha Long City.

The conference was organized by the Vietnamese Society of Emergency Medicine (VSEM) and the Bach Mai Hospital, which attracted leading experts from many countries including the United States, Japan, Thailand and Korea, together with hundreds of doctors and nurses working at hospitals nationwide.

The conference offered them a chance to exchange knowledge and get updated on advanced technologies in emergency medicine, said Nguyen Van Chi, deputy head of Bach Mai Hospital’s A9 Emergency Department, adding that the conference also helped boost cooperation with international organisations.

According to Do Ngoc Son from the A9 Emergency Department, during the two-day conference, participants will join a research forum to exchange knowledge and experience, conduct training courses in stroke care, and especially in pre-hospital injury care, which is important, given the current seriousness of traffic accidents and strokes in the country.

Enhancing the capacity of doctors and nurses is of great importance for improving the quality of healthcare services, experts stated.

At the conference, participants also got a chance to become familiar with advanced medical equipment used in emergency medicine from big names in the world, including GE Healthcare, Pfizer, Ferring and Boehringer Ingelheim.

Nguyen Dat Anh, president of VSEM, said technology is complicated and changes every day, adding that it is necessary for clinicians to remain updated about the latest technologies as technology will help reduce the work load of doctors and enhance healthcare services’ efficiency.

All TB patients to get standard treatment by 2015

The national tuberculosis prevention and treatment programme aims to provide 100 percent of TB patients with access to standard treatment methods this year.

The goal was highlighted at a March 9 conference reviewing the implementation of the programme over the past year.

The programme will also strive to reduce the incidence rate to 187 per 100,000 people and the fatality rate from TB to below 18 per 100,000.

In 2014, the national campaign was carried out nationwide; through the programme over 102,000 patients were discovered with a TB incidence rate of 111 per 100,000 people. The recovery rate among new TB patients was 89.9 percent.

Speaking at the event, Deputy Health Minister Nguyen Thi Xuyen said according to the World Health Organisation (WHO), tuberculosis remains the second leading cause of death among infectious diseases.

Xuyen highlighted that Vietnam ranks 12th among 22 countries with a high tuberculosis burden.

The Deputy Minister requested local authorities make tuberculosis prevention and treatment work a part of their socio-economic development target in 2015.

Specially, the national tuberculosis prevention and treatment campaign will be fortified and linked to anti-HIV programmes while expanding cooperation with public and private medical units, she added.

Event participants discussed models and achievements in the prevention and treatment of tuberculosis, such as developing specific technical skills, encouraging public participation, and improving research competency.

Ninh Binh leads in health insurance coverage for elderly

The northern province of Ninh Binh is one of the three leading localities with strong health insurance coverage for the elderly across the nation with 100% of those between 75 to 80 years of age receiving financial assistance to buy health insurance cards, as released at a conference in the province on March 9.

According to figures reported at the event, as many as 630,000 locals, including all households on the verge of poverty, have been covered by social and health insurance thus far.

The province’s social insurance system spends around 185 billion VND (nearly 8.7 million USD) per year on social insurance benefits.

Speaking at the event, Deputy Minister of Finance and General Director of Vietnam Social Insurance Nguyen Thi Minh asked the provincial Social Insurance Department to work towards bringing additional benefits to labourers and locals in general, contributing to ensuring social security and realising the province’s target of over 85 percent of its workforce covered by social insurance by 2020.

Le Hung Son, the department’s Director, said the sector promotes the application of information technology in managing the collection and payment of insurance premiums while simplifying related procedures and focusing on improving the professional skills of personnel in the field.

It also abides by the State’s policies of social insurance in order to create equal rights for labourers in all economic areas, he added.

On the occasion, two local organisations were presented with the third-class Labour Order and the Prime Minister’s certificate of merit, and 18 individuals received the insignia “For the Cause of Social Insurance” by the Government in recognition of their important contributions to the locality’s social and health insurance coverage effort.

Free joint replacement operations offered to 54 patients

The Department of Orthopaedics and Traumatology (Central Military Hospital 108) and Operation Walk, a US-based charity organization, conducted operations to replace knee and groin joints for 54 patients, replacing 70 joints with artificial ones.

The patients, including policy beneficiaries and needy people, received free operations, worth VND70 million each.

This is the 4th time Operation Walk cooperated with the Central Military Hospital 108 in joint replacement. The organization offers artificial joints and exercises to recover the functions for the joints after operations, reducing the hospital stay for patients.

GE Healthcare goes beyond traditional ventilation solutions

In an effort to help improve patient safety in Intensive Care Medicine, GE Healthcare, the healthcare business of the General Electric Company on March 9 introduced its new CARESCAPE R860 – an Intuitive Critical Care ventilator which uses advanced lung protection tools and an innovative user interface.

Vietnam is the first country in ASEAN where GE Healthcare is launching this product.

The CARESCAPE R860 simplifies the use of advanced tools to tailor treatment for each patient by measuring patients’ lung volume and potential lung recruitability, which is the ability of the lung alveoli to open, and titrating the appropriate positive end-expiratory pressure (PEEP) to allow better oxygenation.

“The lung is a delicate and highly sensitive structure,” explained Paul Hunsicker, clinical manager of Respiratory Care for GE Healthcare’s Life Care Solutions business.

“Patients affected by lung disease are highly susceptible to ventilation-associated lung injury, and mechanical ventilation can be detrimental if too much volume or pressure is delivered.

“This new ventilator helps to address these concerns,” said Hunsicker.

The CARESCAPE R860 has introduced an intuitive user interface into the world of mechanical ventilation, helping decrease the intimidation associated with caring for difficult patients.

The system provides a user experience similar to other common devices we interact with on a daily basis, such as cell phones and tablets, including one touch navigation and minimal menus, allowing clinicians to focus on the care delivered to the patient, rather than how to interact with the ventilator.

Through the introduction of advanced monitoring parameters, the CARESCAPE R860 is able to provide a Lung Protection strategy which can better reflect the impact of ventilation, helping clinicians make better decisions and helping to reduce the risk of harm to the patient that can result from mechanical ventilation.

In addition, the newest feature of the CARESCAPE R860 is the ability to monitor metabolic rates of patients.

The ventilator includes nutrition information right on the touch screen which can tell clinicians if the patient is suffering from malnutrition – another complication that patients with respiratory failure are at risk of in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU).

In fact, malnutrition is common in acutely ill patients, occurring in 30-50 per cent of hospitalised patients, with a higher prevalence among critically ill patients4.

“A patient’s duration of stay in the ICU can be directly impacted by improper ventilation and malnutrition, particularly for surgical patients where malnutrition can affect a patient’s ability to heal after surgery and wean from the ventilator,”

“We’ve integrated indirect calorimetry or Metabolics into the CARESCAPE R860 ventilator so that a patient’s nutritional needs can now be measured directly through the ventilator,” said Hunsicker.

This new feature helps clinicians ensure their patients caloric needs are met, without the need to bring additional equipment into an already crowded patient room.

“Data shows that more than half of all ICU patients worldwide are significantly underfed based on the energy they are prescribed to receive for the first two weeks of ICU care,” Hunsicker added.

In Vietnam in particular, a recent cross sectional study in a major urban tertiary care hospital in Vietnam showed a total of 19 per cent of hospitalised pediatric patients aged six-months to 18-years, and 33.3% of hospitalised adults 19-years and above were considered to have malnutrition.

Vietnam to domestically produce at least 5 vaccines

Four local firms are taking steps to produce at least five vaccines, including the combined 5-in-1 and 6-in-1 shots that are in great demand in Vietnam under a large project.

This project is one of the national product programs run by the Ministry of Science and Technology, Do Tuan Dat, director of the Vaccine and Biological Production Company No. 1, said in a recent interview with Tuoi Tre (Youth) newspaper.

Under this project, at least five vaccines will be produced, including a Vi-rEPA typhoid vaccine, a Japanese encephalitis virus vaccine made in Vero cells, a hepatitis A vaccine made in diploid cells, a 5-in-1 vaccine (against five diseases: polio, whooping cough, diphtheria, tetanus, and Haemophilus influenzae b (Hib)), and a 6-in-1 vaccine (for the preceding five diseases plus hepatitis B), Dat said.

Of these vaccines, the 5-in-1 and 6-in-1 are really desired by families having babies, Dat said.

Vietnam now has four vaccine makers, including Dat’s company, which are carrying out the project, he said.

It is expected that the 5-in-1 and 6-in-1 vaccines will be tested in 2018, Dat said.

Currently, the country is facing a shortage of the two combined vaccines, said Tran Dac Phu, head of the health ministry’s Preventive Health Department.

Vaccine makers have committed themselves to providing Vietnam with 530,000 doses of 5-in-1 and 6-in-1 this year, but the amount is enough for only 170,000 children, far lower than the actual demand, Phu said.

Dat emphasized that every vaccine marker is required to ensure their products’ quality and any vaccine must undergo tests to prove their safety and effectiveness.

Vietnam has so far produced 11 of the 12 vaccines used in its national vaccination program, Dat said.

Of these 11, the one against measles has been placed by the World Health Organization (WHO) among the vaccines meeting global standards, he said.

Over the past ten years, Vietnam has adopted international benchmarks and processes in making vaccines, Dat said, adding that the WHO is taking steps to recognize Vietnam’s national regulatory authority for vaccine quality management.

Upon such recognition, Vietnam will have a good opportunity to export its vaccines, Dat said.

Vietnamese female scientists succeed in low-cost groundbreaking eye research

Fruitful low-cost, pioneering research conducted by a group of female scientists in Hanoi earned the team a scientific research award on Saturday and promises an effective new treatment for people with eye defects or damage.

Female scientists at Hanoi Medical University’s Embryology Faculty and their counterparts at the National Institute of Ophthalmology’s Cornea Faculty have successfully cultured stem cells of the peripheral areas of corneas and of epithelium in the mucous membrane, which will be used as transplants for patients with damage to the eyeball surface.

The approach, which is the first to have been attempted in the country, was conducted at a cost of VND890 million (US$41,476), much cheaper than normal.

The team’s efforts have paid off as their research proves fruitful and earned them a 2014 Kovalevskaia award, which was given away on Saturday.

The awards are given annually to outstanding female scientists for their innovative research or massive contributions to the local science arena.

According to Associate Professor Hoang Minh Chau, of the National Institute of Ophthalmology’s Cornea Faculty, the team was driven by their concern that a growing number of patients have incurred extensive damage to their eyeball surface in both their eyes and face an imminent risk of going blind.

The approaches adopted in the past are flawed and required that patients be on medication to avoid transplant rejection risks for the rest of their life.

Based on research in other countries, the team embarked on their groundbreaking work and piloted their stem cell culture in 2003.

Their hurdles included limited state funding and unavailability of certain chemicals and materials in Vietnam.

Undaunted, the team worked out alternative chemicals and materials.

Four years later, their culture of rabbits’ stem cells of the peripheral areas of corneas was a big success, with the cells and epithelium working well on the animals that sustained eye injuries.

The women made a daring move when they began their culture and transplant on humans in 2008.

The transplant’s result on the first patient treated with the approach seven years ago has remained good so far.

Associate Professor Nguyen Thi Binh, of Hanoi Medical University, said over 20 patients have received the treatment up to now.

The team has also completed paperwork to propose that the Ministry of Health adopt the pioneering treatment in many eye hospitals and clinics.

The scientists hope that they will soon be able to begin similar research which meets global standards.

Education authority strictly asks students to obey traffic law

The Ministry of Education and Training has just sent a document to its sub-departments and schools asking to increase information of traffic regulation to students.

Students must strictly obey railway traffic regulation, especially they must be clearly aware of forbidden activities when driving in streets.

Education sector and schools must provide their students with information of river traffic including wearing life-jacket on boats and carrying out strictly guidelines.

Schools must keep close watch to extra-activities out of schools in a bid to ensure safety for students.

Moreover, the departments of education must instruct schools to work with parents that they should not let their children driving in street without license.

Besides, parents must promise not let their children to drive without helmet, even when they drive electricity bicycles or motorbikes.

Authority will impose penalties on violating students to deter them from breaching of the law.


Đăng ký: VietNam News