The Government of Vietnam (GVN) has made remarkable strides in improving the health of the country’s citizens. However, much remains to be done in the areas of HIV, tuberculosis (TB), and global health security. The U. S. Agency for International Development (USAID) partners with the GVN to create inclusive health care systems to address long standing and emerging infectious disease threats, to ensure better health for the people of Vietnam.
ADVANCING NATIONAL EFFORTS TO END AIDS
Through the U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), USAID collaborates with the Vietnam Administration of HIV/AIDS Control, the private sector, and community-based organizations to advance Vietnam’s goal of ending AIDS by 2030. As the first Asian country to receive PEPFAR support and currently the only Asian country with a bilateral PEPFAR program, Vietnam holds a unique place in PEPFAR’s progress and milestones over the last two decades. With support from USAID, the GVN has made significant progress in taking both financial and technical ownership of the HIV response; the GVN no longer requires donor support for methadone programs, and as of 2023, 90% of Vietnam’s antiretroviral therapy drugs for HIV-positive patients are now financed and procured by the GVN. USAID’s HIV programs continue to focus on building local ownership of high quality, client-focused HIV prevention and treatment services.
INTRODUCING INNOVATIONS FOR TB
Vietnam is one of the 20 countries WHO has designated as having the highest estimated numbers of incident TB cases, and one of the top 20 countries with the highest estimated numbers of incident drug resistant TB cases. USAID partners with Vietnam’s National TB Program, private sector, and community-based organizations to work toward the GVN goal of ending tuberculosis by 2035. USAID’s innovative TB detection, treatment, and prevention programs serve as models that are being scaled up by the GVN nationwide. For example, USAID has supported the NTP to improve TB diagnostic networks with technology like Ultra-portable X-ray machines and WHO recommended rapid diagnostic tests which bring diagnostic capability to remote and underserved communities.
STRENGTHENING GLOBAL HEALTH SECURITY
USAID continues to strengthen Vietnam’s effectiveness in preventing, detecting, and responding to emerging infectious disease threats. This includes strengthening the country’s defenses against public health threats stemming from animals, and developing a large-scale, multidisciplinary network of professionals that work across the human, animal, and environmental health interface. USAID supports the development and implementation of information management systems and surveillance to improve disease reporting and response; implementation of zoonotic disease surveillance in live bird markets; and enhancement of biosecurity and waste management in livestock farms and captive wildlife facilities. USAID also supports the Vietnam One Health University Network, and has trained more than 60,000 students and faculty on the multisectoral One Health approach, which recognizes the interconnection between people, animals, plants, and their environment.
SUPPORTING THE COVID-19 RESPONSE
USAID has strengthened Vietnam’s capacity to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic through our long-standing cooperation in the health sector. USAID has provided more than $27 million in COVID-19 assistance to confront medical, social and economic challenges of the pandemic. This support includes the installation of liquid oxygen systems at more than 20 health facilities, providing immediate support for COVID-19 patients, and longer term resources for all types of patients. In addition, USAID provided 590 refrigerators and technical assistance to help accelerate equitable access to and delivery of safe and effective doses of COVID-19 vaccines and other routine vaccines for children, especially in remote and hard to reach areas.
- Support for Technical Excellence and Private Sector Sustainability in Vietnam (STEPS) promotes private sector participation to grow a sustainable HIV market in Vietnam, including partnering with diverse private sector groups to introduce and scale innovative service delivery models and health products to reduce the number of new HIV infections and AIDS-related deaths in Vietnam. [2021-2026, $15,000,000]
- Local Health System Sustainability (LHSS) supports the Government of Vietnam in transitioning its national responses to HIV and tuberculosis from donor to domestic funding through financial management, rebuilding commodity procurement supply chains, and revising legal documents. [2020-2024, $13,900,000]
- Meeting Targets and Maintaining Epidemic Control (EpiC) is closing the remaining gaps in Vietnam’s efforts to meet its 95-95-95 epidemic control targets: that 95% of people living with HIV know their status; 95% of people who know their status are on treatment; and among those treated, 95% have a suppressed viral load and reduced likelihood of passing on the virus. EpiC also supports the Ho Chi Minh City Health Department to establish “Integrated Surveillance and Health Information Systems for Health Security” including an assessment on health workforce needs and roles of community health collaborators in health security, and resource mobilization plan. [2022-2023, $4,200,000]
- Support to End Tuberculosis project partners with the Government of Vietnam in the ambitious effort to end tuberculosis by 2035 through robust detection, treatment, and prevention. [2020-2025, $23,983,038]
- Closing Gaps to End TB (C-GET) improves TB prevention, care and treatment services through direct engagements with local community organizations and private health facilities. [2023-2028, $8,000,000]
- Tuberculosis Implementation Framework Agreement (TIFA) provides resources to Vietnam’s National TB Program to improve its in-service training and supervision networks, to monitor social health insurance transition process, and to develop and carry out the TB education and communication plan. [2019-2027, $2,000,000]
- The Sustaining Technical and Analytic Resources follow-on project continues embedding local TB advisors to NTP to improve its supervision network, in-service training, communication, and supply chain management. [2023 - 2028, $1,800,000]
- Infectious Disease Detection and Surveillance (IDDS) strengthens disease detection networks and surveillance systems to improve the detection of diseases in priority infectious diseases, and improve the quality of real-time surveillance and information systems for pathogens of greatest risk to public health [2019-2024; ICF Inc, LLC; estimated budget $2,800,000]
- One Health Workforce (OHW) – Next Generation (OHW-NG) strengthens the University Network (VOHUN) which brings together 27 Vietnamese universities from the fields of medicine, veterinary science, nursing, and public health to coordinate, develop and deliver cutting-edge training programs to equip professionals with multi-disciplinary skills and approaches to address complex global health security preparedness [2019-2024; University of California, Davis; estimated budget $3,000,000]
- SEAOHUN Transitional award collaborates and links regional networks with Vietnam One Health University Network (VOHUN) and VOHUN’s sustainability plan [SEAOHUN; 2022-2024; $400,000]
- Risk Mitigation and Management of Human Health Threats along Animal Value Chains supports biosecurity at wildlife and livestock farms, surveillance and reporting of animal health threats, and an enhanced focus on ending the commercial trade and consumption of wild birds and wild mammals [2019-2024; FAO; estimated budget $7,000,000]
- Stop Spillover strengthens Vietnam’s capacity to reduce the risk of viral spillover from animal hosts to humans, and works with stakeholders to address threats posed by zoonotic viral diseases to reduce risk of spillover from animals to people, amplification of viruses in animals or people, and geographic spread [2020-2025; Tufts University; estimated budget $3,800,000]
- Working Towards Global Public Health Security strengthens Vietnam’s International Health Regulations (2005) Capacities to Prevent, Detect, Assess and Respond to Public Health Emergencies, focusing heavily on COVID-19 technical support to the Ministry of Health in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic and continues its broad support for nearly all aspects of public health in Vietnam [2021-2023; WHO; $800,000]