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Apr 05, 2020 / 19:19

Vietnam PM urges acceleration of ventilator production

Vietnam's health ministry should have plans to receive and distribute the ventilators donated by domestic and foreign organizations and individuals.

The Ministry of Health needs to speed up the production of medical equipment, including ventilators for Covid-19 patients, the Government Portal quoted Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc as saying at a recent meeting.

The health ministry should have plans to receive and distribute the ventilators donated by domestic and foreign organizations and individuals, the PM noted.

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The PM's request was made in the context that the coronavirus case toll has been on the rise.

Chairman Nguyen Duc Chung of the Hanoi People's Committee has warned that this city with a population of eight million has around 300 ventilators although it has 100 plus Covid-19 patients at present.

Vietnam’s biggest private conglomerate Vingroup said on Friday it had acquired a licence agreement with Medtronic for its PB560 ventilator production in a move to support the country's fight against the virus. The firm would also produce low-cost open-source ventilators designed by Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Vingroup said it would be able to produce up to 55,000 units a month at its existing automobile and smartphone factories in Vietnam, including 10,000 PB560 ventilators.

Before that, Japanese medical equipment producer Metran, founded by a Vietnamese-Japanese inventor, said it would produce 15,000 ventilators for the Vietnamese market, of which 2,000 ones will be transferred in the first phase to support Covid-19 prevention.

Its founder cum CEO Tran Ngoc Phuc said that Metran is expected to cooperate with a Vietnamese partner to produce ventilators in the Southeast Asian country. The company will share its patent on the ventilator with this partner.

If parts supply constraints are resolved, Metran is expected to produce between 5,000 and 10,000 ventilators per month. In the first month, the company plans to produce between 1,000 and 2,000 ventilators.

Besides, PM Phuc asked the health ministry to coordinate with the Ministry of Labor, War Invalids and Social Affairs to prevent and control Covid-19 disease at social charity establishments, nursing homes, drug rehabilitation and prisons.

He stressed that there is a high risk of Covid-19 spreading on a large scale in Vietnam, thus, all people should work closely with competent agencies to effectively implement urgent solutions, especially social distancing.

As of April 5, Vietnam has confirmed 241 Covid-19 patients, 91 of them have been cured and discharged from hospital.