At the signing of cooperation pact for the Healthy Lung programme between the Health Ministry and AstraZeneca company. (Photo: baochinhphu.vn)

Hanoi (VNA) – The Health Ministry and AstraZeneca have signed a cooperation pact to implement the “Healthy Lung” programme in Vietnam, funded by the multinational biopharmaceutical company.

The signing ceremony for the three-year programme took place in Hanoi on October 18.

The pact marked the health body’s involvement in the 1-million-USD programme, which was launched last month by AstraZeneca, the Vietnam Medical Association, the Vietnam Respiratory Society and the Vietnam Association against Tuberculosis and Lung Diseases.

“Healthy Lung”, as part of an AstraZeneca global initiative, aims to enhance management and public awareness of asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), contributing to reducing cases and deaths.

Under the programme, AstraZeneca will sponsor the building of 150 outpatient centres treating the diseases to facilitate early detection and treatment. The outpatient treatment network is expected to reduce economic and health care burdens for Vietnam.

Under the deal, the ministry will work with AstraZeneca and other partners to hold training courses and seminars, providing updated information for public health workers nationwide.

A national survey showed that about 4.2 percent of the Vietnamese population suffers from COPD, while many others are yet to be diagnosed and treated due to poor infrastructure, limited public awareness, and weak health sector capacity. The research said only 43.9 percent of polled Vietnamese doctors could name four COPD diagnosis criteria.-VNA