The Ministry of Health (MoH) has asked hospitals nationwide to outline plans on quality management and set up projects to improve the quality of check-ups and treatments.

At a workshop in HCM City on Aug. 30, Nguyen Trong Khoa, deputy head of the MoH's Health Examination and Treatment Department, said that hospitals should base their plans on the ministry's set of criteria as well as standards proposed by international health commissions and councils.

The ministry also plans to collect opinions from patients and relatives and use those as a basis for developing standards.

Hospitals have been told to ensure the safety of patients and health staff by properly using medicine and injections, and performing surgery under professional methods.

Each hospital has a council on hospital quality management. However, Dr Luong Ngoc Khue, head of MoH's Health Exam and Treatment Department, said quality management has not yet been carried out at all hospitals in Vietnam.

Only 21 out of 171,210 public and private hospitals nationwide have done so.

Vietnam is faced with a shortage of officials specialising in hospital quality management, he said.

Because of the lack of knowledge about hospital quality management, the quality of check-up and treatments has not improved.

The ministry said it will focus on improving the capacity of hospital managers by issuing guiding documents and pouring more investment in hospitals.

It will also issue incentives for hospitals to implement quality management and encourage them to use information technology, Khue said. /.