Welcome Remarks By Ambassador Ong Keng Yong, SIF Chairman, At The Launch Of The SIF Haemodialysis Care Project In Hanoi, Vietnam

Associate Professor Nguyen Duc Hinh, President, Hanoi Medical University,
Ambassador Catherine Wong, Singapore’s Ambassador to Vietnam,
Associate Professor Ha Phan Hai An, Head of International Cooperation, Hanoi Medical University and Director of Kidney Diseases and Dialysis Department, Viet Duc Hospital,
Dr Nguyen Huu Dung, Director of Dialysis Department, Bach Mai Hospital,
Associate Professor Adrian Liew, Head and Senior Consultant, Renal Medicine, Tan Tock Seng Hospital,
Singapore International Volunteers,

Good afternoon. Thank you for joining us at the launch of the Singapore International Foundation, or SIF, Haemodialysis Care Project.

For 45 years Singapore and Vietnam have built excellent and longstanding ties between its peoples. This bond of friendship was further strengthened at the signing of five cooperation agreements last year – including one between the SIF and the Vietnam-Singapore Friendship Association, and witnessed by our respective prime ministers on the occasion of the visit to Vietnam by Singapore’s Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong.

Since 1994, the SIF has brought together the peoples of Vietnam and Singapore to collaborate on projects in the fields of healthcare, education, arts and culture, and social entrepreneurship. Today’s Haemodialysis Care Project launch marks yet another collaboration between Singaporean and Vietnamese healthcare professionals, to help raise standards of  haemodialysis care in Vietnam.

Over the next two-and-a-half years, the SIF, Hanoi Medical University (HMU) and Tan Tock Seng Hospital (TTSH) will collectively work towards improving the quality of haemodialysis care, and enabling the safe delivery of its services to patients in Hanoi. We expect this project to directly benefit 700 kidney patients annually, and subsequently improve the overall quality of care for some 5,000 patients in the region.

Over the course of this project, a team of Singapore International Volunteers (SIVs) – comprising doctors and nurses in renal medicine – will help build a core group of 60 master trainers from HMU. This core group, equipped with enhanced knowledge and skills, will in turn cascade their training to other healthcare professionals in the field. Our SIV, Dr Manohar Giliyar Bairy, will share more about the training programme shortly.

This collaborative project not only contributes to sustainable development in the healthcare sector. It also fosters friendships and creates greater intercultural understanding between our communities. Yesterday I had the honour of witnessing the first training workshop of this project. I was truly heartened by the burgeoning spirit of collaboration and camaraderie between the Singaporean and Vietnamese teams.

I would now like to take this opportunity to extend my deepest gratitude to Hanoi Medical University for graciously welcoming us into your homeland. My heartfelt thanks also go out to TTSH and our dedicated team of specialist volunteers. It is always a privilege to have like-minded partners who share the passion to collaborate and achieve common goals. We are glad to usher in the new year with the start of this new partnership with you.

Thank you and I wish you a pleasant day with fruitful discussions ahead.    



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