Hai Phong (VNA) – The National Association of Underwater Medicine and Hyperbaric Oxygen was established by the Vietnam National Institute of Maritime Medicine and Maritime Health Association during a congress on July 13 – 14.

Held in the northern city of Hai Phong, the first congress of the National Association of Underwater Medicine and Hyperbaric Oxygen elected Prof. Dr. Nguyen Truong Son as Chairman while 29 others were selected for the association’s executive committee.

According to newly-elected chairman Son, Vietnam is a coastal nation with territorial waters tripling the land area and a large maritime workforce. However, health care services for underwater diseases and diving emergencies face many challenges due to a lack of specialized medical workers, tools and facilities, he said.

Meanwhile, hyperbaric medicine has been increasingly applied for treatment and emergency care of serious diseases at hospitals and medical facilities across the country. The new approach is applicable to treatment for victims in drowning accidents or bitten or stung by marine animals.

However, knowledge on this field remained limited so the treatment effectiveness is below expectation, the expert noted.

At the congress, delegates discussed and exchanged ideas about 15 studies in underwater medicine and hyperbaric oxygen and the use of hyperbaric medicine in health care service delivery. -VNA