On the afternoon of October 2, at the regular Government press conference, Deputy Minister of Health Nguyen Truong Son received a question about reviewing the situation of socialization of medical equipment and services and the reason for the delay in promulgating the service price schedule.

According to Mr. Son, the policy of socializing investment in medical facilities and equipment is correct and has achieved many achievements;

`However, we must admit that there are some shortcomings of this form of socialization, which is the increase in medical equipment prices,` Mr. Son said.

He affirmed that, not when the case occurred at Bach Mai hospital, but in the past, the Ministry of Health has regularly directed units to review projects to install medical equipment in the form of socialization.

Deputy Minister of Health Nguyen Truong Son.

Recently, Acting Minister of Health Nguyen Thanh Long signed Directive 20 requiring all relevant units to review and publicize medical service prices so that people have the right to choose according to their needs.

Regarding the development of two circulars on medical service prices and on-demand medical service prices, Mr. Son said that the Ministry of Health has developed drafts since the second quarter of 2019, however, `before promulgation, it must be approved.`

Since the beginning of September, the Medical Equipment Price Publicity Portal has been put into operation to publicize the prices of drugs and supplies.

Also at the press conference, Major General To An Xo – Chief of Office of the Ministry of Public Security informed that the investigation into the price increase of medical equipment at Bach Mai Hospital `is not the first, but not the last`

`Based on the documents collected, the authorities will consider whether to continue to expand the investigation or not,` General Xo said.

Previously, at the press conference on September 4, Major General To An Xo informed that initial investigation results showed that a number of individuals at Medical Technology Joint Stock Company (BMS), and Appraisal Joint Stock Company

During the installation of the robot system to support neurosurgery, the Customs declaration recorded that the product was imported at a price of 7.4 billion VND, including VAT, but was falsely inflated to 39 billion VND.

`The price of the robot system is 7.4 billion VND, the machine depreciation cost for one patient is about more than 4 million VND. However, with a price of 39 billion VND, the patient has to pay the machine depreciation cost of 23 million VND each time.

Regarding the case, Mr. Nguyen Quoc Anh, former director of Bach Mai Hospital, and many individuals were prosecuted and detained by the Police Investigation Agency of the Ministry of Public Security.

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