Document Type: Perspective
Department of Medical Services Administration, Ministry of Health, Hanoi, Vietnam
The Menzies Centre for Health Policy, University of Sydney, Sydney, Australia
Private healthcare services in Vietnam are seen as a major part of the solution to the rapid increase in need and demand for healthcare services. Formally recognized over 20 years ago, the private health services coexist with public services and are available all over the country. However, the scale and size of private sector is still small compared to the public sector and public acceptance and reputation still limited. There are substantial concerns with the quality of services and the adequacy of regulation. Human resource for health is currently inadequate to support growth in both public and private sectors. The role of the private sector in achieving Vietnam’s population health objectives is not clear. In this emerging economy, there is significant potential for increased dependency on private healthcare to increase health access inequities. This paper discusses how private healthcare could better contribute to healthcare coverage in Vietnam.