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The 110th Military Medical Hospital to foster medical practitioners of “good medical ethics and therapeutic techniques”

The 110th Military Medical Hospital, 1st Military Region, is one of the grade 1 general hospitals, tasked with receiving, giving first aid to and treating officers and soldiers from units within its area of responsibility; diagnosing and treating diseases for social welfare beneficiaries, people covered by health insurance, and residents living in the provinces of Bac Ninh, Bac Giang, Lang Son, and so forth. In addition, the hospital also performs combat-ready missions through rotationally deploying medical support forces to Son Ca island (also known as Sand Cay), Truong Sa district, Khanh Hoa province, and other unplanned tasks.

Doctor Diem Dang Thanh checking patient’s health

In recent years, natural disasters and epidemics and pandemics have witnessed complex developments. The number of people in need of diagnosis and treatment of diseases is on the rise. There are increased requirements of healthcare among soldiers and people. In the meantime, infrastructure and medical equipment of the hospital remain outdated. There is a distinct lack of medical practitioners, especially the highly-skilled ones, and imbalance in majors. The qualification for this job remains low in some fields. To successfully accomplish all missions, the Hospital Party Executive Committee and Directorate have established and drastically executed the Project “Development of the 110th Military Medical Hospital for the 2015-2020 period: Vision to 2030,” which focuses on cultivating highly qualified human resources, modernizing facilities and medical equipment, innovating the way of working, and applying the patient-centered approach. Among these measures, the hospital regards the cultivation of highly qualified human resources as the key factor. Special attention has been paid to leading and directing this task through many measures aimed to foster medical practitioners of “good medical ethics and therapeutic techniques.”

Given the concept of medical ethics as “roots,” core quality of medical practitioners, the hospital, in recent times, has attached special attention to training and fostering physicians’ medical ethics, considering this as the consistent deciding objective of improving its diagnosis and treatment quality. Accordingly, on the one hand, the hospital has promoted propaganda and education to raise medical practitioners’ awareness, responsibility and attitude in communication with patients. The content of propaganda and education is focused on glorious tradition of this branch and 12 principles of medical ethics issued by the Ministry of Health, as well as statutes and regulations of the Military Medicine and the hospital. On the other hand, the hospital has also promulgated codes of conduct to clearly identify basic principles and content governing relations between hospital cadres and staff and patients and their family members, 58 administrative violations subjected to sanctions, etc., to set the standard for every medical practitioner to train themselves in terms of medical ethics. Moreover, the hospital has expedited the system of citizen receiving offices, suggestion boxes and hotlines as prescribed by the Ministry of Health and Ministry of National Defence, enabling patients and their family members to give opinions. It has clearly instructed and assigned staff to respond to patients’ inquiries according to their majors and levels. The hospital usually circulates questionnaires on medical ethics among patients and their family members on the days of their departure from the hospital, and regards this as an important channel to collect information, especially the disagreeable one, about every aspect of the hospital.

To achieve high effectiveness, in recent times, the hospital has aligned the cultivation and improvement of physicians’ medical ethics with the execution of the Politburo’s Directive 05-CT/TW (Tenure XII), considering this a breakthrough with practical, concrete content such as medical cadres and personnel to realize “three-no, three-in, and three-together policy” with patients. During the implementation, the hospital has requested departments, offices, divisions, cadres and medical staff to awake to and strictly follow the teaching of Uncle Ho “Physicians must be like gentle mothers” while stepping up the movement “Military physicians follow the teaching of Uncle Ho,” “Establishing five-good military medical units,” and so on. At the same time, the hospital has constantly paid attention to improving cadres and staff’s material and spiritual life; heightened the exemplary pioneering role of leaders and commanders at various levels in performing their tasks; and timely praised and multiplied prominent examples, good people and good deeds while strictly handling violations of medical ethics, thereby making contribution to cultivating medical practitioners of fine dignity, amiable communication style, politeness, civilized behavior, healthy pure lifestyle, and a high sense of responsibility without making mistakes in service, diagnosis and treatment of diseases.

In fact, medical ethics are not only manifested in the spirit, attitudes, responsibilities, and professional ethics, but also in professional competence, quality and effectiveness of diagnosing and treating patients. Therefore, apart from training and cultivation of medical ethics, the hospital has attached special attention to fostering and improving its physicians’ professional competence and ability to master modernized medical equipment and techniques. It has taken initiative in conducting well the planning, training and employment of physicians, and developing doctors and medical staff balanced in professional knowledge and appropriate for age differences while promoting training, combining education with training and cultivation of professional knowledge, absorbing modernized, new techniques from central hospitals, and so forth. On the basis of reviewing and closely controlling the quality of physicians from various specialties, the hospital has worked out projects and plans to develop long-term and medium-term human resources; proactively taken the short route in some key techniques and fields; and gradually raise the physicians’ professional knowledge and skills. In recent times, the hospital has carried out policies to attract qualified doctors and resident physicians. Besides, it has selected and sent doctors and nurses to study at major medical academies, schools and centers both inside and outside the military, with a focus on young, excellent physicians and leading experts in areas that the hospital has many advantages, satisfying its immediate and long-term missions.

To improve the physicians’ ability to diagnose and treat diseases, along with sending its medical personnel to training institutions according to planned targets, the hospital has paid attention to selecting and training teams of doctors in an advanced, specialized direction at Cho Ray Hospital, the 115th Hospital Ho Chi Minh City, and so forth. In addition, the hospital has also attached importance to retraining and additional training with a view to fostering professional skills and knowledge of specialized staff. During its implementation, the hospital has actively renewed content of training programs to ensure its relevance to practical requirements of each specialty under the motto: “Seniors train juniors, and excellent, experienced physicians cultivate new graduates.” The hospital has also invited good doctors and leading experts from hospitals, inside and outside the country, to deliver their lectures and assist its medical practitioners and staff in the acquisition of new techniques; and maintained diagnosis and coordination with other hospitals to facilitate the doctors’ participation in handling complex cases, directly improving their professional knowledge and skills. Doctors, nurses and technicians within their initial five-year working periods at the hospital are requested to sit for annual professional qualification tests under time constraints. These processes are carried out seriously by the Hospital Professional Council. The hospital has also attached importance to maintaining scientific activities and exchange, on-site transfer of medical techniques, and so on. Through those active, synchronized measures, over 50 per cent of cadres and doctors have got doctoral and masters degrees, and specialist qualifications grade 1 and grade 2 so far. The hospital has had 1 associate professor and doctor, 2 people’s medical practitioners, and 27 excellent physicians. The medical practitioners and personnel possess a relatively comprehensive quality in accordance with its position of a grade 1 general hospital. Consequently, its quality of receiving, giving first aid to and treating patients has grown by leaps and bounds in recent years. Within a short time span, doctors and technicians have been able to exploit and master many advanced, modern medical equipment and techniques, including magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), 16-slice and 128-slice CT Scanners, endoscopic retrograde cholangio pancreatography (ERCP), double balloon endoscopy, digital radiography systems, 3D and 4D scanners, 2400 chemistry analyzers, extracorporeal hemodialysis, anesthesia machines, and so on. Doctors at the hospital have applied successfully post-surgery pain management, conservative treatment of solid visceral injuries following multiple injuries, minor liver laceration, fractured kidneys, and spleen rupture grades 1, 2, 3, and 4; gastrectomy, ganglion resection (treatment of stomach cancer), and many other new techniques, including microsurgery, pulse therapy, etc., which are highly appreciated by the medical community and help to bring about confidence for cadres, solders, patients, and their family members.

Furthermore, the hospital has also associated training with scientific research with a view to improving the physicians’ ability to master advanced, modernized medical equipment and techniques, satisfying the demand of “excelling in therapeutic techniques.” It has promulgated mechanisms and policies to encourage medical cadres and personnel to take part in scientific research and application, especially new technologies and techniques relating to intensive care, imaging diagnosis, testing, laparoscopic surgery, microsurgery, and information technology, and minimized transfer of the patients to a higher level facility. The hospital has hundreds of scientific projects at the branch, ministry and military region levels inspected, and dozens of new treatment techniques and therapies applied in diagnosis and treatment of diseases since 2011. The typical examples, among others, include craniotomy for epidural hematoma, double balloon enteroscopy to detect problems in the small intestine, extracorporeal lithotripsy, bone fracture repair, laparoscopic gallbladder surgery, treatment for perforated peptic ulcers, laparoscopic stones removal via upper digestive tract, and so forth.

In view of robust developments of science and technology and requirements and tasks of diagnosing and treating diseases for soldiers and local people in the coming time, the 110th Military Medical Hospital advocates enhancing hospital planning and mechanisms for financial management, resource development and gradual socialization of health care services with a focus on planning the hospital according to a new model to better meet requirements and tasks in peacetime and wartime. At the same time, it also speeds up the implementation of projects dedicated to building infrastructure and providing medical equipment as approved; complies with Law on medical examination and treatment; periodically updates and supplements guidelines for the management of diseases according to disease models without making professional mistakes as a result of insufficient sense of responsibility; promotes mass media communication on health care and medical knowledge so as to raise the patients’ understanding, prevention and control of bacterial contamination. Moreover, the hospital has attached importance to exploiting the efficiency of the Quality Management Council, Council of Science and Technology, Council of Medicine and Treatment, Council of Bacterial Contamination Control, Nurses’ Council, and Professional Council in the execution and supervision of disease examination and treatment, etc., making contribution to building the Vietnam People’s Army and defending the Fatherland in the new situation.

Senior Colonel, Associate Professor, Doctor Diem Dang Thanh, Hospital Director

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