At any given time, there may be as many as 30,000 children waiting to receive surgery in Vietnam. These children are waiting for a chance to be a normal, happy child. Children with heart disease miss out on childhood. They can’t dance, they can’t run, and many can’t walk across the room without help. Without surgery, the child’s life is full of medicines, constant doctor visits, and hospital stays. Every health episode puts the family deeper in debt. Every year without surgery puts the child further behind in school, and in life. Many of these children die while waiting for help.
Heartbeat Vietnam began in December 2005 with a gift of $31,500 from the VinaCapital Group. Since then, over $2,000,000 has been donated by generous donors from Vietnam and many other countries to help poor children who need heart surgery.
The cost of heart surgery for a child in Vietnam ranges from $1,000 for keyhole surgeries to $4,500 for the most expensive cases. HBVN does not discriminate against the expensive cases and also accepts immigrant cases which have no provincial support, so we have many cases that are high cost. However, over the last 847 cases the average total cost was $2,230 per case.
Because of our zero overhead policy and matching funds agreements with our provincial government partners and the Sponsoring Association for Poor People, the cost per surgery to a private donor is just $1,000. We partner with the Vietnam’s top hospitals and surgeons in Ho Chi Minh City, Hanoi, Hue, and Da Nang to ensure that the children receive the best care possible.
To date, Heartbeat Vietnam has saved over 2,600 children and can help many, many more. Giving them a second chance at life is only the first critical step in helping them achieve a better life than was previously imagined. Once a child has his or her health, a world of possibilities opens up, and they can finally start imagining a future that stretches beyond tomorrow.
Read about Nguyen Duc Hao, one of our Heartbeat Vietnam beneficiaries.
Get to know Val Monk, one of our Heartbeat Vietnam donors, who turned her difficult experience with congenital heart defect into a driving force to help others.