What does it mean to be a truly global company?
For Abbott (No. 10 on the DiversityInc Top 50 Companies list), it means developing a unique approach based on the needs in each individual market, and collaborating with local organizations to improve public healthcare and quality of life.
This is never more evident in Vietnam, an important and growing market Abbott first entered more than 20 years ago. In that time, the country has become an increasingly attractive destination for economic development with increased modernization and industrialization. In fact, in 2016, Vietnam had the second fastest growing GDP in Asia, behind China.
Along with changes to its economy, Vietnam's healthcare needs have also advanced. A growing middle class, an aging population and changes to healthcare policy in Vietnam have increased the demand for quality care for all ages.
Pioneering healthcare solutions
Abbott works with local stakeholders, including governments, to anticipate and stay ahead of the country's unique healthcare challenges. In November, Abbott participated in the APEC Summit to discuss key issues such as innovation in healthcare, healthy aging and enhanced food safety, further underscoring the company's commitment to advancing healthcare in the region.
Abbott has also formed strategic partnerships with the Departments of Vietnam Ministry of Health (MOH) and the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC). The company's support on MOH and APEC health initiatives (including food safety, maternal health, and clinical nutrition) led the MOH to grant Abbott an MOH Award recognizing the company's contributions in Vietnam.
Abbott's commitment to Vietnam
To understand, Abbott's impact to healthcare in Vietnam, it's important to understand some of the key projects and partnerships the Company has embarked on in recent years. Here are a few of its most important areas of focus:
- Promoting maternal nutrition: Abbott partnered with the Maternal and Child Health Department of the MOH to establish national nutrition guidelines for pregnant women and lactating mothers as part of its partnership with the government. The project worked to combat high levels of stunting caused by nutritional deficiency in mothers during pregnancy and lactation in Vietnam.
- Improving healthy aging: Abbott launched a series of initiatives aimed at raising awareness of the importance of dietary supplements for the elderly and encouraging individuals over the age of 50 to maintain active lifestyles. A survey sponsored by Abbott among seniors in Vietnam showed that 95 percent of people aged 50+ experience loss of strength, with malnutrition being a common issue and up to 78 percent of hospitalized adults being undernourished.
- Advancing quality nutrition in hospitals: In 2016, Abbott partnered with the MOH to support the Ministry in improving the quality of clinical nutrition in hospitals. To-date, a quality improvement program has been implemented in a number of hospitals, bringing many tangible benefits for people annually.
- Focusing on food safety: Abbott is supporting the MOH's National Institute for Food Control and its "Improving Food Safety Testing Capacity" agenda, which is aimed at facilitating the exchange of professional knowledge and expertise in food safety testing.