Medical assistants earn from VND600,000 to VND700,000 per day during Tet holiday
Working as patient ‘assistant’
At 11pm, in the piercing cold of Hanoi, nearly 20 women from the surrounding provinces crowded at a corner adjacent to Huu Nghi Hospital, hoping to get temporary work as medical assistants.
As Tet nears, only the most seriously ill stay at the hospitals, which puts their families in an awkward situation. Those who can afford it often choose someone to take care of their relatives.
A woman from the northern province of Phu Tho is working at a hospital, taking care of a patient suffering from a brain injury from an accident. She said that on a normal day, she can earn VND200,000 (USD9.5), but during Tet the wage increases to between VND600,000 and VND700,000 (USD28.5-33.2).
On the morning of January 10, Nguyen Thuy Bich from Hanoi’s Tran Xuan Soan Street was looking to hire someone to look after her father at hospital during Tet. She said, “As Tet is coming, it's difficult for the family to stay all day to look after my father. So we've hired an experienced and enthusiastic assistant.”
Due to rising demand, this year, several men have also decided to take holiday jobs. “Many families prefer to hire men because they are strong and can easily do some of the tasks required to take care of patients. Many of the women who decide to take these jobs have to ask their husbands for help so they can take care of their families during the holiday season,” Bich noted.
One woman who lives on Le Quy Don Street, in Hanoi, said she's having a hard time finding a medical assistant. She said that three separate people have started and quit over the last week because of the difficulties of taking care of her father, who is paralyzed and weighs more than 70 kilos.
The first New Year’s caller
Another popular job this year is to be the first visitor to a family's home for the lunar new year. There are even centres who act as agent in providing this service, the first one set up last year. Since then, to other such agencies have popped up.
The job requires that the age and sign of the caller is compatible with the family who owns the house. This is meant to bring prosperity and good luck to the members of the household.
One of these centres charges VND2 million (USD95.07) for half an hour visit. Some others charge as much as VND6 million (USD285.2).
Several young people in big cities like Hanoi and HCM City upload their personal information to online forums in hopes of an opportunity to earn some extra money.
Some young people even hire a companion to spend the holiday with them.
The director of one such agency said as many as 1,200 girls have registered to provide such services at his centre.