VCF’s Health Program Saves the 9000th Child with Congenital Heart Defects

Heartbeat Vietnam funds heart operations for 9,000 children
May 12, 2022 | 08:33

After 16 years, The VinaCapital Foundation (VCF)’s program - Heartbeat Vietnam - reaches a remarkable milestone – providing surgery for 9,000 children who had congenital heart defects.

VCF’s Health Program Saves the 9000th Child with Congenital Heart Defects
Photo courtesy of the organization

In the celebration on May 11, guests, the 9,000th patient and his family joined in the ceremony for the Tree of Happiness and cut the cake to mark the milestone.

Heartbeat Vietnam’s 9000th child is Thanh Danh, a 5-year-old boy from Ca Mau province who had a long and painful journey, but family and medical staff always provided love, optimism, and encouraged resilience and determination.

Danh was diagnosed with single ventricular heart defect at only two months of age. However, with both parents making a living as factory workers, Danh’s surgery was only a dream for his poor family.

After being supported for the first operation by the hospital that treated Danh, he continued to grow normally until three years old when his health started to decline. Danh’s parents were heartbroken to hear that their son needed another surgery to survive, because of not only the pain for their baby but also where to find the funds to pay for it.

In April 2022, Danh had his second and third life-saving heart operations with the support of Heartbeat Vietnam. Danh underwent 2 surgeries in just 3 days to permanently repair his heart defects.

During Danh’s 15 day stay in the intensive care unit, his mother anxiously remained determined to see her brave boy through. She slept on the hospital floor at night and ate a bowl of rice every day.

The parents’ prayers and sacrifices paid off. After three weeks, Danh was discharged healthy and happy. Danh’s mother shares with parents, “In any difficult situation, I hope all mothers keep their faith in doctors and nurses, as well as your hope in the kind hearts in the community.”

Founded in 2006, Heartbeat Vietnam, a program of the VinaCapital Foundation (VCF) has been devoted to saving little lives by improving access to free quality healthcare for poor children with congenital heart defects, helping children to receive timely treatment, and assisting their families with financial support.

According to the Ministry of Health statistics, there are 15,000 infants born in Vietnam each year with CHD. The cost of treatment is high and many patients come from disadvantaged families in rural areas who cannot afford the travel or treatment costs much less post-operative care for their children.

Heartbeat Vietnam ensures the sick children are identified and then receive their heart surgeries on a timely basis. Heartbeat Vietnam also provides family grants to families for pre and post-surgery expenses.

VCF’s Health Program Saves the 9000th Child with Congenital Heart Defects
The VinaCapital Foundation and other partners have successfully conducted the Outreach Clinic program that provides free heart check-up for children in Lang Son province in April 2022. Photo courtesy of the organization

Since its inception, Heartbeat Vietnam has provided 773 continuing care packages to be able to visit the hospital for check-ups and follow-ups, 669 grants for families to have more resources to take care of their children, and 232 scholarships for bright students to maintain their education.

Heartbeat Vietnam schedules 80 – 100 rural outreach clinics a year and has screened over 250,000 rural children and found over 10,000 children with congenital heart defects. These children receive immediate health care.

Some initiatives of Heartbeat Vietnam to promote fundraising and awareness include Vet Seo Cuoc Doi (Scar of Life) and Chay Vi Trai Tim (Run for the Heart), and documentaries Noi Ket Yeu Thuong (Connecting Love) on Ho Chi Minh City Television (HTV).

“VinaCapital Foundation has transformed the lives of 9,000 children who will now have the opportunity to be a child, grow up normally and dream. Their families now have hope and optimism. This transformation is one of the greatest rewards a person or an organization can have,” shares Don Lam, co-founder and CEO of VinaCapital, VCF’s chairman of the Board.

With this 9,000 child milestone, VCF is motivated and determined to keep moving forward to help more children and families have better access to healthcare, better living conditions and better lives overall. VCF prepares to help 9,000 more in the years ahead, he affirmed.

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