From its busy and bright city life to its calm and tranquil landscapes, Vietnam has diverse interests for all visitors. Known as the land of the ascending dragon based on its geographical "S" shape, with streets filled with culture, aromatic foods, and history, it is one of Southeast Asia's most popular tourist spots. Still, it can also be found globally through its differing variety of exports. Notably, Vietnam ranks 15th in the world and 2nd in Southeast Asia regarding agricultural exports, reflecting agriculture's significant role in the country's economy. Approximately 40% of Vietnam's land is dedicated to agricultural production, providing livelihoods to millions of people.
Among these millions are the hardworking farmers of sugarcane and dragon fruit in the Hàm Thuận Bắc District, located in the Bình Thuận province of Southeast Vietnam. Farming in this region is characterized by labor-intensive work in challenging conditions, which can affect the farmers' health. In this rural setting, the Ham Hiep Commune Health Station is a vital lifeline for farmers and the local community. Operating tirelessly day and night to attend to emergencies, this modest rural hospital faces significant challenges in meeting the healthcare needs of its patients.
The dedicated team of doctors and nurses serves a minimum of 30 patients a day. The most common diseases in this population are diabetes, hypertension, and cardiac issues.
The absence of essential medical equipment, such as an electrocardiogram (ECG) machine for recording the heart's electrical signals, hinders their ability to provide comprehensive care. Moreover, the hospital's limited resources extend to the maternity ward, where they deliver a small number of babies each year under emergency conditions, using improvised quilted plastic mats instead of proper mattresses.
Beyond medical equipment, the hospital grapples with shortages of basic necessities, including chairs for waiting areas and refrigerators for storing medicines. Currently, medicines are stored on unrefrigerated shelves, leading to a shorter shelf life and reduced effectiveness. Acquiring essential medical equipment is a formidable challenge due to economic constraints and the hospital's rural location, which limits access to vital resources. Furthermore, the nearest urban hospital is 4-5 kilometers away, making timely access to advanced medical care a considerable challenge for needy patients.
One of the CHF members, Kayla Le's family, is from Vietnam, and learning about the condition of this hospital made her spring into action. CHF key members and Kayla Le had a WhatsApp video call with the doctors there and realized the pressing need to provide the ECG machine and the chairs in the waiting room.
To procure the ECG machine, chairs, mattresses, and storage shelves, Kayla Le is fundraising for this noble effort.
Kayla Le is on the pre-dental track and obtained a bachelor's degree in biological sciences at Florida International University.
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