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Posts Tagged ‘public’

Over 7,200 public, private hospitals do not have wastewater treatment system

In Uncategorized on December 21, 2010 at 9:36 am

Over 7,200 public and private hospitals in Ho Chi Minh City do not have standard wastewater treatment systems, the Department of Health has reported.

These medical clinics have only rudimentary systems at the best and discharged their wastewater into septic tanks, which are then released into the sewerage system.

The old waste water treatment facilities of the Traumatic Orthopedic Hospital in Ho Chi Minh City. Over 7,200 public and private hospitals do not have wastewater treatment system or the old facilities can’t meet the increase in usage

Approximately 45 central, city and district hospitals and private clinics, have not improved their wastewater treatment systems and the old systems cannot satisfy the increase in usage. The wastewater system is overloaded.

Hospitals said they are short of skill personnel in dealing with the issue, while the relevant agencies have yet to penalize any hospital or clinic that do not meet the requirements of a modern waste treatment system.

However, the city Department of Natural Resources and Environment has fined the Mental Hospital in District 5. The hospital was fined VND6 million and was forced to quickly construct a modern standard wastewater treatment facility.

Hospitals in the city have dumped thousands cubic meters of wastewater into the river environments every day.

Source: SGGP

Overseas Vietnamese stars raise public awareness of traffic safety

In Uncategorized on November 24, 2010 at 6:20 am

Overseas Vietnamese stars raise public awareness of traffic safety

QĐND – Tuesday, November 23, 2010, 20:54 (GMT+7)

Movie star Kathy Uyen and Australian Idol Thanh Bui were chosen as Goodwill Ambassadors for the public awareness campaign launched by the Asia Injury Prevention Foundation (AIP Foundation) in coordination with the HCM City Traffic Safety Committee.

For the first time, Vietnam has joined the event together with more than 100 other nations to remember road accident victims and share the suffering of the injured. The event also helps raise public awareness of road accident deaths and injuries in hopes preventing more road injuries and fatalities.

In 1993, the Road Peace initiated the World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Accident Victims and on 27 October, 2005, the United Nations endorsed it as a global day to be observed on the third Sunday in November every year. This year’s event was celebrated on Sunday 21, November. 

Kathy Uyen and Thanh Bui will be involved in many activities including visiting road accident victims, meeting with government officials to come up with solutions to prevent road accidents, and raising public awareness of traffic safety via the mass media.

Source: VOV


Source: QDND

Project to raise public awareness of traffic safety

In Uncategorized on November 16, 2010 at 2:30 pm

Nuclear power plant locations made public

In Uncategorized on October 24, 2010 at 4:04 pm

Nuclear power plant locations made public

QĐND – Saturday, October 23, 2010, 23:12 (GMT+7)

Vietnam’s first two nuclear power plants will be built in the central coastal province of Ninh Thuan, with Plant No. 1 located in Vinh Truong village of Phuoc Dinh commune and the other in Thai An village of Vinh Hai commune.

The sites of these plants were announced at a conference held in Ninh Thuan province on Oct. 22 by the provincial Industrial and Trade Department and the committee in charge of preparation of investments for nuclear power and renewable energy projects.

Located about 20km from Phan Rang-Thap Cham city in the heart of Ninh Thuan province, Plant No. 1 will cover a land area of 502 ha, including 123 ha reserved for its core zone, where the reactor will be situated, and 379 ha for its safety zone. 

The plant will encompass 310 ha of sea with 38 ha designed for a port and its facilities, and 272 ha for a safety zone. The facilities of the plant’s management and operation control boards will cover 20 ha.

The Ninh Thuan Plant No.1 is designed to have four 1,000-MW turbines to produce 4,000 MW. It will used imported fuels which will be transported by ship. Its first turbine is scheduled to start working in 2020.

The Ninh Thuan Plant No.2 will be built on a land area of 514 ha, with 119 ha for its core area and 395 ha for its safety zone.

The plant will have 308 ha of sea, including 36 ha for its port area and 272 ha for its safety zone.

With the same design capacity as the Ninh Thuan Plant No.1, Plant No. 2 is expected to commission its first turbine in 2021, the second in 2022, the third in 2024 and the last in 2025.

At the conference, representatives of the preparatory committee for nuclear power and renewable energy project also reported briefly on preparations for the project and provincial authorities provided information about land clearance on the sites.

Source: Vietnamplus

Source: QDND

US shuns some big public works projects

In Uncategorized on October 22, 2010 at 7:56 am

New Jersey’s governor wants to kill a $9 billion-plus train tunnel to New York City because of runaway costs. Six thousand miles away, Hawaii’s outgoing governor is having second thoughts about a proposed $5.5 billion rail line in Honolulu.

In many of the 48 states in between, infrastructure projects are languishing on the drawing board, awaiting the right mix of creative financing, political arm-twisting and timing to move forward. And a struggling economy and a surge of political candidates opposed to big spending could make it a long wait.

Has the nation that built the Hoover Dam, brought electricity to the rural South and engineered the interstate highway system lost its appetite for big public works projects? At a time when other countries are pouring money into steel and concrete, is the U.S. unwilling to think long-term?

“My sense is things have changed,” said Andrew Goetz, a University of Denver professor and an expert on transportation policy. “People now tend to see any project as a waste of money, and that’s just wrong.”

In this Oct. 19, 2010 photo, a large rusty metal wall is seen in North Bergen, N.J., covering construction at the ARC Tunnel. Work on the project has been stopped by New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie

“I call it the Bridge to Nowhere syndrome,” he added. “High-profile projects get publicized and they become a symbol for any infrastructure project that’s out there, and even the ones that are justified get tarnished by the same charge.”

The so-called Bridge to Nowhere would have cost hundreds of millions of dollars to connect one Alaskan town to an island of 50 residents. It figured in the 2008 presidential election when then-Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin was criticized for initially backing the plan, which was eventually scrapped.

The other cautionary tale of the past few years is Boston’s Big Dig, the highway and tunnel project that was originally envisioned at less than $3 billion and wound up costing nearly $15 billion.

The Big Dig has made it far easier for motorists to get to and from Boston’s airport, and it eliminated a noisy and unsightly elevated highway that cast a shadow over some of the city’s neighborhoods. But construction was plagued by years of delays, corruption and shoddy workmanship that resulted in the death of a motorist in a ceiling collapse.

A report this month by the Treasury Department and the Council of Economic Advisers paints a picture of a country dissatisfied with the state of America’s aging infrastructure and in favor of improvements, but not necessarily eager to commit the dollars to fix it.

Standing in New York’s Penn Station on Thursday in front of a sign touting the proposed tunnel, commuter Bill Mischell of Plainsboro, N.J., gave voice to those conclusions.

“You could make the argument that it will make New Jersey a better place to live, but you also have to weigh it impartially against the huge cost,” Mischell said. “The state’s in pretty significant financial trouble, and the money’s got to come from somewhere.”

Infrastructure spending in the U.S. stands at 2 percent of the country’s gross domestic product_ half what it was in 1960 — compared with approximately 9 percent in China and 5 percent for Europe, according to the government report.

“During recessions it is common for state and local governments to cut back on capital projects — such as building schools, roads and parks — in order to meet balanced budget requirements,” the report concluded. “However, the need for improved and expanded infrastructure is just as great during a downturn as it is during a boom.”

The American Society of Civil Engineers calculates that the U.S. would need to spend an additional $1.1 trillion over the next five years to restore roads, bridges, dams, levees and other infrastructure to good condition. In its latest report card, the engineering society gave the nation’s public works a “D” grade.

“Somehow we believe if we ignore it, it will go away,” said Blaine Leonard, the society’s president. “And it won’t. We have to stop hitting the snooze button on this problem.”

He said now is a good time to spend money on infrastructure because construction companies in this weak economy are hungry for work and the costs are relatively low as a result.

Major infrastructure projects of the past benefited from strong leadership, notably the interstate highway system pushed by President Dwight D. Eisenhower in the 1950s, he said. Today, though, “there isn’t any high-level leadership about infrastructure,” so there’s no agreement about priorities, Leonard said.

CG/LA Infrastructure LLC, a Washington consulting firm, recently put together a list of the worthiest 100 large infrastructure projects in North America, totaling about $400 billion. Among the suggestions: a next-generation air traffic control system; high-speed rail linking Minneapolis, Milwaukee and Chicago; a pair of highway projects in Texas; and the tunnel that New Jersey’s governor has threatened to scuttle.

To be sure, there are large-scale projects under way, notably in California, where a combination of federal dollars and voter-approved bonds and local tax increases are funding improvements, from highway widening to the $6.2 billion renovation of the Bay Bridge between San Francisco and Oakland. And this week, Arizona and Nevada hailed the opening of a $240 million bridge that bypasses Hoover Dam.

However, many projects recently completed or in the pipeline secured funding before the economy went into a slide. Some of them might not be approved today.

In New Jersey, construction on a rail tunnel connecting New Jersey and New York City — the largest transportation project under way in the U.S. — began in 2009 under then-Gov. Jon Corzine, a Democrat. It is projected to double train capacity at peak times as well as provide 6,000 construction jobs immediately and up to 40,000 jobs after its completion in 2018. About $6 billion of the cost is being covered by the federal government and the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey.

Earlier this month, Republican Gov. Chris Christie announced he was pulling the plug because the cost had escalated from $5 billion in 2005 to more than $9 billion by the federal government’s estimate, and as much as $14 billion by Christie’s reckoning.

“I simply cannot put the taxpayers of the state of New Jersey on what would be a never-ending hook,” he said.

Christie later agreed to reconsider. The two-week review period expires Friday.

In Hawaii, Republican Gov. Linda Lingle announced recently that she wouldn’t sign off on a federally subsidized rail line until an updated economic study is conducted. And that may not be completed before she leaves office in less than two months. That means the project’s fate could be in her successor’s hands.

In Seattle, new Mayor Mike McGinn is threatening to hold up construction of a massive highway tunnel to replace the waterfront’s dilapidated, earthquake-damaged Alaskan Way Viaduct because he fears city taxpayers will be on the hook if costs spiral beyond the $4.2 billion price tag.

“The issue of the overall cost of the tunnel has been a concern to voters since before the recession, and I think the severity of the state’s and the city’s fiscal situation is causing people to take a harder look at … an expensive and risky project,” McGinn said.

In Wisconsin, Ohio and California, Republican candidates for governor have vowed they won’t endorse high-speed rail projects, despite the promise of billions of dollars from Washington.

Other countries are spending heavily on job-creating infrastructure. Projects include Algeria’s $11.2 billion east-west highway; a planned $10 billion bridge linking the Indonesian islands of Java and Sumatra; and China’s $60 billion Yangtze River diversion project.

Australia plans to spend $38 billion to relieve traffic congestion in Melbourne, while Britain is preparing for a $45 billion high-speed rail link between London and the West Midlands. Japan is building a $70 billion highway from Tokyo to Osaka, scheduled for completion in 2020.

In the U.S., it often takes a catastrophe to give infrastructure improvements more urgency. The Minneapolis bridge collapse in 2007 that killed 13 people prompted reviews of aging bridges around the country.

“Unfortunately, our attention span is short,” Leonard said. “You would think the Minneapolis bridge collapse would have sent repercussions throughout the system that would have resulted in a transportation funding bill, but it didn’t. Even bridge funding bills didn’t get through Congress.”

Consultant Norman Anderson of CG/LA Infrastructure said the federal government’s recent emphasis on smaller, “shovel-ready” projects to stimulate the economy is misguided and shows a lack of vision.

“You don’t do ‘shovel-ready.’ That is idiotic and extremely uninformed,” he said in an e-mail. “You do projects now because they produce value for an economy 20 to 30 years into the future, as well as producing immediate jobs.”

Source: SGGP

Public, rural hospitals suffer brain drain

In Uncategorized on October 18, 2010 at 2:26 pm

Public, rural hospitals suffer brain drain

QĐND – Monday, October 18, 2010, 21:18 (GMT+7)

A brain-drain of health workers from public to private hospitals and from rural mountain provinces to urban areas is creating a headache for Viet Nam’s health system.

The Ministry of Health has released a report saying that although the number of health workers increased throughout Viet Nam year -on-year, it did not keep pace with population increases.

In 2008, Viet Nam had 40.5 health workers per 10,000 people. This was lower than that in 1986 when there were 43.1 health workers per 10,000 people.

The report said 50 per cent of health workers were working in urban areas, but only 27.7 per cent of the nation’s population resided there.

Head of Ha Tinh Province’s Health Department’s Medical Profession office Vo Viet Quang said three doctors with masters degrees in surgery, oriental medicine and dental science left provincial hospitals last year.

Several other provincial doctors also moved to private hospitals in Ha Noi, Vung Tau and HCM City this year.

“They quit State-owned hospitals even though the provincial health department did not agree with their proposals,” said Quang.

There are about 640 doctors in Ha Tinh province, about 200 fewer than stipulated by Ministry of Health regulations that each province muat have a ratio of seven doctors to 10,000 people.

Accordingly to this, each district should have at least 30 doctors, but Can Loc District Hospital, for example, has only one doctor who also performs surgery.

The shortage of surgeons led to “some unfortunate mistakes” at the hospital’s obstetrics ward. This recently forced the Health Department to bring in obstetricians from a neighbouring hospital in Huong Khe District.

The Health Examination and Treatment Department said at present there were 141,148 health workers throughout Viet Nam specialising in examinations and treatment. However, the actual demand was for 188,182.

Recent surveys have also found that many medical techniques applied in countries around the world for many years were slow to be adopted in Viet Nam.

This was attributed to the shortage of specialists to run modern equipment.

Director of Binh Duong General Hospital Ngo Dung Nghia said there was rising demand for cardio-vascular treatment and advanced endoscopy on the large intestines and stomach, but the hospital did not have enough medical staff to provide these services.

About 50km away from HCM City, the hospital lacks about 80 doctors. Low pay is blamed for the shortage of young doctors.

To solve the shortages, the Ministry of Health has developed an ambitious plan to have 41 health workers, including eight doctors and two pharmacists, per 10,000 people by 2015.

This means more than 282,000 health workers will be needed by then, and Vietnamese universities will have to provide 5,800 doctors and 1,572 pharmacists more annually.

Deputy Health Minister Nguyen Thi Kim Tien said other measures were needed to overcome the shortage.

This included increasing the quota of medical and pharmaceutical students at universities and creating special payment and treatment policies for health workers, especially those working in rural and mountain areas.

Vu Ba Toan, head of the Organisation and Administrative Work Bureau at the Quy Hoa Leprosy and Dermatology Hospital, has suggested raising occupational allowances to health workers – and making it legally binding for staff sent to receive continuing education to return.

He compared the sending of health workers to receive such training as a two-edged knife is most trained staff were willing to compensate training costs to their hospitals and look for higher paid jobs elsewhere.

Source: VietNamNet/Viet Nam News


Source: QDND

Thang Long Citadel opens to public

In Uncategorized on October 14, 2010 at 2:48 pm

Thang Long Royal Citadel opened for the first time to the public on October 2 on the occasion of the 1000th anniversary of Thang Long-Hanoi.

Thang Long Royal Citadel opens to the public on October 2 (Photo: SGGP)

In the early morning thousands of people queued outside the historical site and streets leading to the citadel were overloaded because capital residents desire to witness the ancient power center over 1,000 years ago.

More than 1,000 artifacts including pottery bricks, statues, household products and others are being displayed at the archa eological area. The free exhibition will run until October 31.

In addition, over 700 special artifacts excavated in the archaeological area at 18 Hoang Dieu is also presenting to the public at the Ha Noi’s ancient citadel during the capital’s millennial anniversary in October.

Thang Long Royal Citadel, which was recently discovered, covers a total of 19 hectares at 18 Hoang Dieu Street and the Ha Noi’s ancient citadel.

The citadel’s area contains traces of the palaces from the Ly, Tran and Le dynasties, proving the long and traditional history of the Thang Long ancient capital over 1,000 years.

The great cultural value of the Royal Citadel has been recorded in the profiles by the Hanoi municipal People’s Committee to UNESCO for recognition as a World Cultural Heritage site

Source: SGGP

GM files for landmark public share offering

In Uncategorized on August 19, 2010 at 7:23 am

NEW YORK, Aug 18, 2010 (AFP) – US auto giant General Motors on Wednesday took the first step to selling shares to the public, seeking to free itself from government control after pulling back from the abyss of bankruptcy.

Filing for what may be one of world’s largest initial public offerings (IPO) of shares, GM did not disclose the number of stocks that will be offered or the price range.

US President Barack Obama drives a 2011 Chevrolet Volt electric vehicle off the line with Plant Manager Teri Quigley at the General Motors Detroit-Hamtramck Assembly Plant in July. AFP file

But the market expects GM to raise between 12 and 16 billion dollars, with the potential to be the second largest IPO in US history, after the credit card giant Visa, which raised more than 19 billion dollars in March 2008.

The landmark step also bodes well for President Barack Obama as it offers the American public some hard evidence for the success of his economic policies to pull the country out of its worst economic crisis in decades.

Senator Carl Levin of Michigan, a Democrat, called it “another important step in GM’s rebound and in the recovery of the domestic auto industry.

“A successful IPO will be even more evidence that the steps the government took in 2008 and 2009 were good for workers, good for Michigan and good for the nation,” he said.

In the filing Wednesday with the US Securities and Exchange Commission, GM said it planned to apply for listings on the New York Stock Exchange and the Toronto Stock Exchange.

“The amount of securities offered will be determined by market conditions and other factors at the time of the offering,” GM said in a statement.

“The number of shares to be offered and the price range for the offering have not yet been determined,” it added.

The stock sale is expected to take place late this year and the company — which was part of the prestigious Dow Jones Industrial Index from 1925 to 2008 — will retrieve its old trading ticker symbol of GM.

The Treasury Department said separately it “will retain the right, at all times, to decide whether and at what level to participate in the offering.”

The IPO filing came nearly a week after the company announced a 1.3 billion dollar quarterly profit, marking a second consecutive quarter with positive earnings.

Company executives have said for several months they were planning to re-float GM, as the biggest US automaker sought to repay its debt to the government, which bailed it out from bankruptcy during the financial crisis.

An IPO will allow the US Treasury to begin offloading the 61 percent stake it holds in GM after last year’s 50 billion dollar US bailout of the Detroit-based carmaker.

GM said the public share offering would include preferred shares as well as common stock.

But the Treasury pointed out that the offering would not include 2.1 billion dollars in preferred GM shares that it owned, which are in addition to the common shares representing the 61 percent stake.

The bailout led to restructuring, mass layoffs, plant closures and billions of dollars in debt wiped out, but ultimately led GM into stability and profit.

For Obama, the IPO filing fits neatly into a campaign to persuade skeptical voters that massive government spending — however loathsome — kept US firms and the economy alive.

GM chief executive Ed Whitacre, picked by the Obama administration to lead the troubled company through reform, announced last Thursday he was stepping down next month, naming board member Dan Akerson as his successor.

Although the announcement caught experts and some GM officials by surprise, it was seen as yet another sign of the car manufacturer’s desire to shed its old skin and free itself from government control.

Source: SGGP

Contest to raise public awareness of traffic safety

In Uncategorized on August 14, 2010 at 3:23 pm

Contest to raise public awareness of traffic safety

QĐND – Saturday, August 14, 2010, 20:50 (GMT+7)

A contest entitled “The scourge of traffic accidents- the community’s story” will begin on June 22 to publicize Vietnam’s Road Traffic Law and raise public awareness of traffic safety.  

The contest was announced at a press briefing held in Hanoi on August 13.

The contest will be held in two phases, from June 22 to September 23 and from October 15 to December 30, with 24 prizes including a special prize worth VND 75 million.

To take part in the contest, contestants can write and send messages to switchboard No 8558 or call 1900571531 for further information.

According to the National Traffic Safety Committee, 12,492 traffic accidents were reported in 2009, leaving 11,516 dead and 7,914 injured. Despite a drop in the number of accidents, there was an increase in the number of fatalities and injuries compared to 2008.

Source: VOV

Source: QDND

Higher fines imposed on public misconduct

In Uncategorized on July 26, 2010 at 3:18 pm

Higher fines imposed on public misconduct

QĐND – Monday, July 26, 2010, 21:37 (GMT+7)

The Government has released Decree No75/2010/ND-CP on the punishment of administrative violations in public areas.

Under the new decree, lawbreakers will be fined up to 40 million VND (2,100 USD) and between 10 million VND and 20 million VND (500-1,000 USD) if they are found guilty of repeating the offense.

Violations that receive fines from 1 million VND to 10 million VND (50-500 USD) include: excessive noise-making; painting and advertising on public works without a licence; and activities like burning votive papers during national festivals and at historic and cultural relics.

People who are inebriated in the workplace or in public places such as hotels, restaurants and traffic vehicles will be fined from 500,000 VND to 1 million VND (25-50 USD).

Source: VNA

Source: QDND