HO CHI MINH CITY, Sept. 28 (Xinhua) -- Vietnam's Mekong Delta currently has 7.85 doctors and 1.39 pharmacists per 10,000 residents, lower than the country's average, Vietnam News Agency on Friday quoted the latest survey by the Can Tho University of Medicine and Pharmacy as reporting.
In the delta, An Giang province has the lowest ratio of doctors of 6.3 per 10,000 residents, followed by Tien Giang province with 6.32.
The Mekong Delta has suffered a severe shortage of medical workers in unpopular fields such as tuberculosis, leprosy, psychiatry, forensic science and surgery, for years. All 13 localities in the delta, including Can Tho city and 12 provinces, have only four forensic doctors.
At present, most of the Mekong provinces do not have enough surgeons for oncology departments at provincial-level hospitals. Every year, the delta needs about 250 new physicians in the five unpopular fields, with those specializing in tuberculosis most in demand, said the university.
Low pay, harsh working environment and high risk of getting infected are main causes of the shortage of medical workers in the delta, according to local doctors.