The long Vietnam War, which came after two decades of turmoil following the decolonisation of Vietnam in 1945, caused the country very serious harm. Between 1964 and 1973, around 2 million people, mostly civilians, fell victims to sustained bombardment by the Americans.
The number of people in Vietnam today who were injured during these armed conflicts is very high. Significant swathes of the land still bear the scars of the fighting, and restoring the environment is a huge challenge for the country.
Fifteen percent of the population is currently living with a disability. As well as the after-effects of past conflicts, there are a number of additional causes of disability: the number of road accidents is rising, as is the number of occupational accidents, in factories or on the country’s building sites; furthermore, many people are affected by congenital malformations.
Thanks to support from the State and the efforts of the health sector, Vietnam has made good progress towards meeting the Millennium Development Goals, in particular in the reduction of infant mortality and mortality during labour. The country is now focusing on the health of deprived populations, the prevention of disability, and the socio-economic inclusion of people with disabilitie.