Recent Blog Entries: Vietnam
It’s great to see the international progress on tobacco control…but also useful (albeit painful) to have the occasional reminder of how far we still have to go.
Participants buzzed as they discussed possible answers, laughed and cheered when they scored points and sighed when they didn’t. It was just like a TV game show!
Neighbourhoods that combine a mix of housing, shops, and other amenities make life easier and reduce unnecessary travel, key ingredients to a livable city!
But, what if hospital-based deliveries are associated with lower rates of optimal breastfeeding practices? This is the situation in Son La. Through our needs and baseline assessments we interviewed over 400 women and found that – by some measurements – delivering in a district or provincial hospital was associated with less optimal breastfeeding practices.
Life for pedestrians in Ho Chi Minh City is a little safer now thanks to measures undertaken by the local government, working with HealthBridge Vietnam and World Resource Institute (WRI).
Cyclists and pedestrians have been literally squeezed out. Crossing the road has become a high risk sport, not for the faint of heart. Do the Vietnamese notice this loss of their own public spaces? I am not sure; climbing out of poverty is probably more pressing.
Ethnic minority women in Vietnam have reported feeling sad and afraid delivering in health facilities without their husbands. A gender-sensitive approach to the promotion of health facility deliveries needs to account for this, which is why HealthBridge is conducting training on the importance of incorporating men into maternal healthcare service delivery.
The streets were full of life: thriving sidewalk cafes with diners watching the activity on the streets, children cycling, musicians playing, traditional actors performing, and a sense of enjoyment of the city.
The other thing that was unsurprising, but resonated with me nonetheless, was that very few women chose to deliver their babies at health facilities. If they did go to a health facility for delivery, it was most likely because they experienced excessive, prolonged pain during labour. Women preferred home delivery for different reasons.
It got me thinking about how challenging it can be to access health services for those who live in a remote location, even without the added element of weather.