Parents must ensure helmets for children
Parents who drive motorbikes, you’ve been warned. Get a helmet for your child, or else you will face a fine of VND100,000 to VND200,000 (US$4.8-9.5), no excuses allowed.
That’s part of the strategy taken by the national campaign Children Also Wear Helmets that began last year in Ha Noi and HCM City. This year, from April to June, it will be carried out in central Da Nang City as well.
The attitude of many parents, however, has been one of “no fine, no worries”.
“I don’t see the police imposing fines on not wearing helmets,” said Nguyen Thi Thu Hong of HCM City, adding that she had bought a helmet for her eight-year-old daughter, but had decided not to use it.
She and thousands of other parents in the city are not only confused about the law, which requires children aged six and above to wear helmets, but are unaware of the dangerous consequences of not using them.
According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), 60 per cent of all children in Viet Nam do not wear a helmet while riding on a motorcycle.
The Children Also Wear Helmets campaign, which is still in its pilot phase, was organised by the National Traffic Safety Committee in cooperation with WHO, the Road-Railway Traffic Police Department, Ministry of Education and Training, and Asia Injury Prevention Foundation.
HCM City police have been directing most of their efforts on areas where primary and secondary schools are located.
Cameras are used to record parents and students who violate regulations, said Tran Thanh Tra, head of the HCM City Road-Railway Traffic Police Division.
He said this method also helped reduce traffic jams and prevented student tardiness at school.
Pictures recorded by the cameras will be sent to the schools, which will then be shown to parents and students.
Ceremony commemorates Dr. Carlo Urbani
A ceremony was held in Hanoi on April 11 to commemorate the 10th death anniversary of Dr. Carlo Urbani, an Italian doctor who devoted his life to the fight against SARS in Vietnam.
The event was co-organised by the Health Ministry, the World Health Organisation and the Italian Embassy.
Urbani (born October 19, 1956), a WHO expert on communicable diseases, had worked in public health programmes in Vietnam since 2000.
He was the first to identify severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) as a new and dangerously contagious disease. Although he himself become infected and died, his early warning to the WHO triggered a massive response that probably helped save the lives of millions of people around the world.
He died in Hanoi treating patients with SARS, contracting the virus himself. After 18 days in intensive care, Urbani passed away on March 29, 2003.
At the ceremony, Deputy Health Minister Nguyen Thanh Long praised the doctor who had devoted his life to save the lives of patients.
He recounted that Vietnam had 63 cases of the virus, of which 37 were doctors, nurses and health workers who directly took care of SARS patients. Although the outbreak was controlled, Urbani and five Vietnamese doctors and nurses died during the combat, he said.
Long expressed his hope that the WHO will continue to stand side by side with Vietnam in the fight against diseases, especially avian influenza H7N9.
Conversion of commercial houses to be announced
The conversion of commercial housing projects into houses sold to low-income earners will be publicized, director of the Ha Noi Department of Construction Nguyen The Hung said.
The city only allowed the transformation of projects, which have not mobilized capital, and projects of which capital contributors agreed to be converted, he affirmed.
Responding to people’s concern that the conversion will probably cause an overload for urban infrastructure of the designed area, Hung said that before granting conversion licences to the projects, officials of the department and the Planning and Architecture Department will work together to review the project planning, ensuring the safety and convenience for residents.
The city’s People’s Committee has permitted the conversion of three commercial projects into low-income projects to reduce the stockpile in the real estate market. These include the Trung Van housing area in Tu Liem District, the 35-floor building in Song Da, the urban area in Ha Dong District and the AZ Thang Long Ha Noi residential complexes.
After converted, each apartment will have an area between 40 and 70 square metres and be sold at VND15 million (US$714) per square metre.
Cancer prevention meets 25 percent of demand
Although cancer is a leading cause of death worldwide, prevention measures only reach 25 percent of potential cases.
Deputy Minister of Health Nguyen Thi Xuyen announced the figure at a seminar held in Hanoi on April 11.
Xuyen said in recent times, dozens of new tumour hospitals and centres have been put into operation and the latest technologies applied in big cities, but they failed to meet the actual need.
To address the issue, the Ministry of Health will accelerate the dissemination of information about cancer prevention, early detect and use new technologies in treatment to reduce the number of cancer fatalities.
More than 50 scientific reports on breast, cervical, digestive tract, hematology and lung cancer research, as well as the latest technologies on cancer prevention, diagnosis and treatment were presented at the seminar, providing a good opportunity for scientists to improve their professional skills.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) estimated that in 2008, more than 4 million people in the Asia Pacific region suffered from cancer and 2.6 million people died from the disease. The mortality rate is forecast to hover around 11 million by 2030.
More than 70 percent of fatalities are in low and middle income countries which have limited access to early diagnosis and prevention. However, 40 percent of cancer cases can be prevented and many can be successfully treated if they are detected early.
Vietnam-Laos friendship exchange held in China
A friendship exchange was held on April 12 between the Vietnamese and Lao embassies in China to mark Laos’ 2556th traditional New Year.
Lao Ambassador to China Somdy Bounkoum emphasised that the exchange was a follow-on to the two countries’ successful celebration of the 35th anniversary of the signing of the Friendship and Cooperation Treaty and 50th anniversary of diplomatic ties. He spoke highly of Vietnam’s whole-hearted assistance to Laos in the past struggle for national liberation and in the current process of national construction and development.
Vietnam currently ranks second among the largest foreign investors in Laos.
Vietnamese Ambassador to China, Nguyen Van Tho affirmed that the close friendship between the two countries will continue to grow and flourish.
During the exchange, participants enjoyed tying threads around the wrists, splashing water to pray for luck and singing songs in both Lao and Vietnamese languages.
Regional job centre opened
A regional job placement centre worth VND150 billion (over US$7.2 million), was opened on Wednesday in southern Dong Nai Province, and is expected to promote job recruitment activities in southeastern Viet Nam.
The job placement centre is located in the province’s Bien Hoa City, close to many industrial areas. Construction started in December 2010 over an area covering 69,000 square metres.
The centre encompasses three major divisions: administration and management; technical infrastructures; and a four-floor labour market information division.
This was the first regional centre that has been completed and opened out of the country’s four key regional job placement centre projects, according to Nguyen Thanh Hoa, deputy minister of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs.
Large-scale job placement sessions will be organised at the centre, accommodating about 200 employers and over 5,000 job seekers. There are two computer service rooms allocated for those who come to apply for vacancies.
The centre is expected to promote job recruitment activities in not only Dong Nai Province, but also the southeastern region and the Central Highlands, helping to ensure the balance between supply and demand of labour in southern Viet Nam.
Kidnapped girl rescued in China
The Ha Giang Border Guards, in co-ordination with the Chinese Border Guards, successfully rescued a 19-year-old girl who was kidnapped and taken to China on Wednesday.
The ethnic Mong minority victim, from Quan Ba District in the northern mountainous of Ha Giang, was anaesthetised while she was working at home on March 27. Her family’s acquaintance saw her later in China and reported to the border guards.
Two hours after receiving the information, the border guards discovered the victim being detained in Yunnan Province.
First Vietnam-RoK friendship village inaugurated
A village named “Vietnam-the Republic of Korea (RoK) Friendship Village” was inaugurated in the southern province of Vinh Long on April 11, becoming the first of its kind in Vietnam.
In the first stage, the village, in Vung Liem town, Vung Liem district, provides 41 houses, each worth VND30 million (around US$1,500), for poor locals and those who lost their houses due to landslide.
The VND2 billion project saw the RoK side’s contribution of more than VND1.2 billion.
The district authorities are now campaigning for the implementation of the second stage of the project.
Local students to join physics contest online
Vietnamese high-school students nationwide will join an online Physics Olympiad, entitled ‘Nuclear Education in Russia’, on April 26-27 via the website www.globalatum.ru in Russian, English and Vietnamese.
According to Consul General of the Russian Federation in Da Nang City, Dikushin Valentin Mikhailovich, students in the 12th grade – the last year of high-school education in Viet Nam, are eligible for the contest, which is organised by Russia’s Rosatom Nuclear Energy State Corporation.
Dikushin said the best of the 20 students who qualify from the contest will take part in training courses on nuclear power at Russian universities.
More time to register secondhand vehicles
Those who buy secondhand vehicles but do not register the new ownership with the police will not be fined until 2015, said Tran The Quan, deputy head of the Legal Department under the Ministry of Public Security.
Traffic police have been guided about the procedures for changing ownership and punishing those who buy and sell vehicles for the first time without changing the name of the vehicles’ new owner within 30 days, Quan said.
Millions needed for drought prevention
Central Quang Nam Province has requested the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development for VND40 billion (nearly US$2 million) to construct drought prevention works, according to the provincial People’s Committee.
The city has suffered a serious lack of water for agricultural production since the beginning of the year with only 20 of the 73 reservoirs having full levels of water.
The city also carried out measures to prevent drought such as dredging the Vu Gia and Thu Bon rivers, installing hundreds of pumping stations, and setting up temporary dams in the Quang Hue riverhead.