Vietnam Airlines signs Memorandum of Understanding with UK charity Facing The World and the World Alliance of Airway Management to support children with facial deformities

On the 5th of May 2023, under the witness of Minister of Foreign Affairs Bui Thanh Son, Vietnam Airlines signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with UK-registered charity Facing The World (FTW) and the World Alliance of Airway Management (WAAM) in the fields of medical training and community health care.


Mr. Le Hong Ha – President and CEO of Vietnam Airlines, Mrs. Katrin Kandel – CEO of Facing The World, Dr. Imran Ahmad – Chairman of the Board of Directors of the World Alliance for Airway Management signed the MoU.

According to the cooperation agreement, over the next five years, Vietnam Airlines will fly specialist FTW teams to Vietnam to provide training for Vietnamese doctors, enabling them to perform life-changing operations on children born with disabling facial deformities; and to donate key equipment to Vietnamese hospitals to facilitate the efficient performance of complex surgeries; as well as other charitable activities across the country. In addition, Vietnam Airlines will also transport experts from all over the world for the WAAM Satellite Conference to be held in Vietnam in 2024.

Le Hong Ha – President and CEO of Vietnam Airlines, said: “Our long-term goal is to help enable Vietnamese doctors to learn new techniques and approaches from the world’s leading surgeons. We are proud to continue to support charities such as Facing the World and not-for-profit organisations such as the World Alliance of Airway Management. Through this cooperation, Vietnam Airlines wants to affirm its role in supporting the healthcare sectors of both Vietnam and the UK, thereby strengthening trust, friendship and long-term cooperation between the two countries.”

On this meaningful journey of changing the lives of children affected by facial deformities, Vietnam Airlines has worked hand in hand with voluntary organisations to carry out humanitarian missions, including supporting the transportation of doctors and nurses from Operation Smile to provide free surgery for children with cleft lip, cleft palate and maxillofacial deformity; and from Vietnam Heart Programme to support the cost of heart surgery for children.

Under the witness of Mr. Bui Thanh Son – Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mrs. Phan Thi Kim Oanh – Deputy Chairman of the President’s Office, Mr. Mark Garnier – Mark Garnier – the United Kingdom’s Trade Envoy to Viet Nam and Mrs. Sara Wheeler – Prime Minister’s Trade Envoy Relationship Manager (South East Asia), Mr. Le Hong Ha – President and CEO of Vietnam Airlines and Mrs. Katrin Kandel – CEO of Facing The World signed and exchanged the MoU.

Katrin Kandel – CEO of Facing The World, said: “Thousands of children in Vietnam need urgent surgery to their head and neck, to treat physical abnormalities that limit their quality of life. But despite huge advances in medical care there, many are unable to access the treatment they need. These cases can be incredibly complex and require highly specialist skills in difficult airway management, often because their breathing structures are distorted. Having the support of both Vietnam Airlines and the World Alliance of Airway Management, doctors in Vietnam can now train in the latest techniques to manage these challenging surgical cases. Our fellowship programmes in the UK, US and Australia allow doctors in Vietnam to increase the standards of care and change the lives of children all over the country.”

Nguyen Mai Anh-COMM

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