Vietnam always assists and is willing to cooperate with the Lao health sector, in areas including infrastructure construction, equipment supply and personnel training.

Vietnamese Health Minister Nguyen Thi Kim Tien made this remark at a working session with her Lao counterpart, Eksavang Vongvichit, in Hanoi on Dec. 15.

She highlighted the two countries’ long-term cooperation in health care, as well as the Lao health sector’s development, particularly its investment in technological modernisation and improvement of human resources.

Minister Tien urged that with the long common borderline, the two countries should pay more attention to cooperating in preventive health, especially prevention and control of diseases such as foot-hand-mouth, dengue fever, influenza and cholera outbreaks.

According to the Vietnamese minister, the two health sectors need to closely coordinate with relevant agencies to prevent cross-border transport of illegal drugs which were responsible for high HIV infection rates.

She affirmed a commitment to help Laos in personnel training, saying that Vietnam will create good conditions and give preference to Lao students who want to study at medical colleges and universities in Vietnam .

In reply, Lao Minister Eksavang Vongvichit attributed the Lao health sector’s development in human resources and facilities to the Vietnamese Government’s assistance.

The Lao Minister said he wants Vietnam to continue to cooperate with Laos to ease difficulties in such areas as epidemic control, personnel training, equipment provision and infrastructure construction./.