Rewriting concept of ATM
10:00 | 06/09/2021
VGP - A machine that gives out free oxygen -- it sounds too good to be true during the roller-coasted 4th wave of COVID-19 pandemic in the southern provinces of Viet Nam, especially in Ho Chi Minh city. But on 4th September, these "oxygen ATMs" have been set up in Thu Duc city to help those who need it most during this hard time of the pandemic.

Deputy Priime Minister Vu Duc Dam (second, right) inspects medical oxygen filling stations at Thu Duc Steel Joint Stock Company, Ho Chi Minh City, September 4, 2021. Photo: VGP

Deputy Prime Minister Vu Duc Dam attended the opening ceremony for Oxygen Filling Station of Thu Duc city which located at Thu Duc Steel Joint Stock Company – VnSteel.

The company converted some oxygen stations for steelmaking in their factory into medical oxygen filling stations with capacity ranging from 200 to 300 cylinders (0.04m3/cylinder) per day, helping to tackle the shortage of oxygen of the city during the pandemic time.

In addition to the large oxygen cylinders provided to medical stations and hospitals, oxygen ATMs also provide free service of supplying and exchanging thousands of small oxygen tanks for COVID-19 home-monitored patients, helping them to reduce chance of getting more severe and assisting in recovery.

Staff and volunteers at oxygen ATMs receive information about patients who need oxygen 24/7 then conducting the delivery to the patient's residences from 8 am to 5 pm daily to meet the pandemic prevention and control regulations of Ho Chi Minh city.

The Oxygen ATM Program will support the exchange of free oxygen tanks for hospitals with an expected capacity of 5,000 to 10,000 cylinders in the coming time. And it is planned that this program will be expanded to other provinces across the country by the time Ho Chi Minh city controls the outbreak.

With other ATM models like rice ATM or book ATM, the oxygen ATM has rewritten the concept of ATM, turning it into model of caring and supporting, helping those affected by the coronavirus in the Southeast Asian country. The first 'oxygen ATMs' were put into operation in Ho Chi Minh City on August 2 with the message "Giving oxygen, extending life". The installation launched by Hoang Tuan Anh, founder of the fist rice ATMs in Viet Nam, in cooperation with volunteer group PHGSmarthome, the Viet Nam Young Entrepreneurs Association, and Ho Chi Minh City Youth Union.

Earlier in 2020, in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, Vietnamese entrepreneur Hoang Tuan Anh created a network of rice ATMs in Viet Nam to help alleviate poverty and address food insecurity due to reduced household incomes. The rice ATMs in Vietnam operate 24/7 to ensure food is always accessible to those in need. The ATMs were initially created as a temporary form of assistance during the pandemic, but Tuan Anh pledged to keep them going even after that pandemic wave in order to reduce hunger for impoverished people.

To date, the Oxygen ATM Program has provided free oxygen to more than 400 mobile medical stations, equivalent to free oxygen support for approx. 4,000 COVID-19 patients daily./.

By Nguyen Minh



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