ASEAN countries will use nurses of each other from next year as part of their efforts to beef up regional integration and cooperation, a Vietnamese expert said on Friday.

International hospitals in Vietnam will start accepting nurses provided by other countries in the ASEAN bloc in 2015 and Vietnamese nurses will be employed by health facilities in other ASEAN member countries in return, Dr. Cao Van Thinh, head of the Nursing and Medical Technology Department of the Ho Chi Minh City-based Pham Ngoc Thach University of Medicine, said on the sidelines of a two-day international nursing conference that closed at the university yesterday.

ASEAN stands for Association of Southeast Asian Nations that includes Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Brunei, Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, and Vietnam.

Pham Ngoc Thach is one of the four Vietnamese medical universities selected by the Ministry of Health to take part in an ongoing project to train nurses in accordance with international standards, Dr. Thinh said.

Nurses who pass the training course will be granted practitioner’s certificates with which they can practice nursing in any ASEAN country, he added.

The conference was attended by about 400 health experts, 250 of whom came from the U.S., Australia, Sweden, Belgium, Japan, Thailand, Indonesia, the Philippines, and Malaysia.

At the event, many experts in nursing and medical technologies delivered their reports on how to renovate nursing services to improve people’s health in the context of regional integration among the ASEAN countries. –TUOI TRE NEWS