The new Laboratories provide state-of-the-art diagnostic and research capabilities that will improve the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of major infectious diseases that continue to exert a heavy toll in Vietnam and elsewhere. The Laboratories are the latest development in the partnership between NHTD, the Wellcome Trust and the Oxford University Clinical Research Unit (OUCRU) in Vietnam and herald a new level of commitment of the partners towards tackling national and global health issues.
The opening ceremony was attended by His Excellency the Minister of Health, Mr Nguyen Quoc Trieu, His Excellency UK Ambassador Mark Kent, the Director of NHTD, Dr Nguyen Van Kinh and the Director of the Unit in Hanoi, Dr Peter Horby.
"We are delighted to welcome His Royal Highness to open our Clinical and Research Laboratories," says Dr Kinh. "Teams of Vietnamese and international researchers are leading the fight against some of the most serious health issues facing our country and the neighbouring region. We look forward to the opportunity to showcase our new facilities and the outstanding research being conducted by our scientists."
HRH The Duke of York visited the laboratories in his capacity as the UK Special Representative for International Trade and Investment, where he met with Vietnamese researchers working in areas such as antibiotic resistance, pneumonia and Dengue fever.
"These new facilities have provided an important opportunity to build research capacity within Vietnam so that Vietnamese and international researchers working on Vietnamese priorities can conduct research in an internationally competitive environment", says Dr Peter Horby, Director of OUCRU-Hanoi.
The new NHTD-OUCRU Laboratories are jointly funded by the Wellcome Trust, the Li Ka Shing Foundation, and the South-East Asia Infectious Disease Clinical Research Network. They are a further extension of the Wellcome Trust Major Overseas Programme in Vietnam which was established 1991.