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HEDO and the Medical and Scientific Aid for Vietnam, Lao and Cambodia (MSA-V.L.C) of the United Kingdom opened the training course for traditional midwives for Tua Chua district, Lai Chau province.

The old Lai Chau province has just divided into 2 provinces: Lai Chau and Dien Bien provinces. The new Lai Chau province has the area of over 9.000 km2, the north neighbouring with China, the west neighbouring with Lao, the east neighbouring with Lao Cai and the south neighbouring with Dien Bien province. Lai Chau has difficult topography mainly is high mountains and hill, 1500m above the sea.
Lai Chau has the population of 400.000 people; the average population density is 36,7person/km2. Lai Chau has 20 groups of people. The ethnic minority people makes up over 70%, the most crowed group is Thai people makes up 25%, H'mong 21%, Dao 11%...
Lai Chau has 5 districts and one town: Lai Chau town, Muong Te district, Sin Ho district, Tam Duong, Than Uyen and Phong Tho ( Giao Sang clinic funded by MSA.VLC is here). There are 96 communes, wards and 1.062 villages in the whole province.
Lai Chau is the poorest province in Vietnam now, people mainly live on agriculture and forestry. The market economy is not yet developed, it is still self-sufficient. The average GDP is about 400 USD/person/year whereas the whole country is 650USD/year, Hanoi is nearly 1.000USD/person/year, Ho Chi Minh city is 1.500USD/person/year.
According to the proposal of Lai Chau Department of Health, HEDO and the Medical and Scientific Aid for Vietnam, Lao and Cambodia (MSA-V.L.C) of the United Kingdom has opened the training course for 100 traditional midwives for Tua Chua district, the poorest, farthest district and has the highest number of mothers who have tradition to give birth at home in Lai Chau province.
Due to the slow economic development so education, health have a lot of difficulties, people are limited in accessing to healthcare network. There are only 82 doctors, in the shortage of 200 doctors and 60 senior pharmacists. Provincial hospital and 6 district and town hospitals are lack of doctors, pharmacists and physicians. 1.062 villages not yet have health volunteers. There are only 90 midwives who were trained by the government they mainly work in commune clinics, villages are only helped by traditional midwives in delivery cases for ethnic minority women, although they have experience they lack of knowledge in medication and they do not have medical facilities so the pitiful fatality of mother and children remain high. Obviously, the highly dead rate of mother and children is caused by other reasons such as lack of safe water, low environmental hygiene like breeding facilities, raising chicken near the house, there aren’t clean toilets, dirty kitchens, flies and insects, or having too many children so exhausted... all of these lead to diseases for mothers and children and deaths.
Currently Muong Te district Lai Chau province is the number one that urgently demands for training midwives. This place is near to Giao Sang clinic, it is about 15km from Giao Sang.
Muong Te has the area of about 3.000 km2. There are nearly 50.000 people, it has 15 groups of people living together, the most crowed is H'mong and Dao people, they are ethnic minority people and with the very low knowledge, there remains much backward tradition such as worshipping God, Ghosts, they do not go to clinics when they are ill and not giving birth at the clinics.

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