Topic: Mental Health in Workforce

Mental health is not merely the absence of a mental disorder; it encompasses the ability to think, learn, and understand one’s emotions and the reactions of others. It is a state of balance within oneself and with the environment, influenced by various physical, psychological, social, cultural, and spiritual factors.

In Vietnam, mental health is a pressing concern, with approximately 15 million people, or around 14.9% of the population, affected by mental illness. Depression and anxiety are among the most prevalent conditions. However, the availability of mental health care is limited, with only provincial or central medical facilities offering specialized departments for treatment. Typically, treatment primarily involves medication, while other essential methods such as counseling or psychotherapy have not been adequately developed.

Moreover, Vietnam faces significant challenges in addressing mental health due to societal misperceptions and stigmas associated with mental illness. These stigmas have led to a reluctance to seek diagnosis and delays in receiving appropriate treatment. As a result, many individuals do not receive the mental health care they need.

This break-out session will focus on the solutions already in place for the treatment of mental health issues, both from a hospital and a social enterprise perspective. We will explore how awareness can be created and the connections that have been established with enterprises to provide solutions for mental health in the workforce.

During this panel discussion, we have gathered experts, healthcare professionals, and representatives from social enterprises who will share their insights, experiences, and strategies for addressing mental health in the workforce. We will discuss existing initiatives, successful case studies, and potential solutions to promote mental well-being and support employees in the workplace.


01.00 – 01.20: Presentation by Tran Huyen Nhung, Managing Director, Tam Nhung Social Enterprise

01.20 – 01.40 Presentation: Promoting Positive Mental Health of Children and Adolescents in VietNam By Lesley Miller, Deputy Representative, UNICEF VietNam

01.40 – 02.10 Presentation: “Fostering a holding workplace: employees’ wellbeing” through the lens of I-O psychology applied in workplace mental health matters” by ESI Institute CEO and Founder Dr. Steven Pham

02.10 – 02.40 Coffee Break

02.40 – 03.30: Discussion Panel

Break-out room info

  • Location: Yellow Room, 2nd Floor, Pullman Saigon Hotel
  • Time: 13:00-15:30
  • Date: November 30th, 2023


Dr. Bui Hong Quan, Scientific Advisor and Senior Lecturer, Viet Ideas and Care & Training Center

Bui Hong Quan is a seasoned professional and advocate for mental health in the workforce. As a Scientific Advisor and Senior Lecturer at Viet Ideas Care & Training Center, he brings a wealth of experience from roles in education, research, and corporate training.

With a Doctorate in Psychology from the Vietnam Academy of Social Sciences, Mr. Quan has co-authored textbooks and actively contributed to scientific research projects. His commitment extends beyond academia, as he has coached and trained employees at leading companies such as IBM, Lotte, VNPT, and Vingroup on corporate culture, teamwork, and stress management. Bui Hong Quan is poised to share his expertise in the breakout session on “Mental Health in the Workforce,” offering valuable insights for fostering well-being in professional environments.


Tran Huyen Nhung, Managing Director, Tam Nhung Social Enterprise

Tran Huyen Nhung, with more than 12 years as a communications leader as well as Chairman of Merck Vietnam’s Corporate Responsibility (CR) Initiative, is always passionate about leveraging his business background and network to Collaborate with stakeholders to improve people’s lives.
In 2022, she decided to leave Merck to focus on social impact work. With partners, she founded the social enterprise Tam Nhung to focus on mental health care for married women in Vietnam, with a team of lawyers, psychologists, and politicians. herself
With love and community responsibility, Tran Huyen Nhung is not only a highly professional and experienced manager but also a leader who always cares about the mental health of workers. Her expertise and dedication make her the ideal speaker on this important topic.

Lesley Miller, Deputy Representative, UNICEF VietNam

Lesley Miller has served with UNICEF for over 20 years in multiple management and program positions, including in the areas of child rights and protection, adolescent health and development, and partnerships. 

Lesley currently leads the UNICEF program in Viet Nam, which focuses on advancing the rights and well-being of the most disadvantaged children and adolescents, working closely with government, civil society, and the private sector. Before Vietnam, Lesley worked in UNICEF offices in Serbia, Cambodia, Geneva, and New York Headquarters. 

Lesley has master’s degrees in public policy and business administration from the University of Michigan.

Lesley takes the lead in ensuring that adolescent mental health and well-being are mainstreamed and prioritized in UNICEF programs on health, education child protection, and social policy.

Dr. Steve Pham, Founding President, ESI Institute

Steve Pham is a catalyst for positive change in workforce mental health. As the Founder and CEO of ESI Institute, he leads research initiatives in global leadership, entrepreneurship, and talent development. Steve’s commitment to applied psychology in human resources and business coaching aligns with his passion for fostering holistic workplace well-being.

With a wealth of international experience, Steve has presented at conferences, connecting with leaders and HR practitioners globally. As a Certified Professional Coach, he is dedicated to professional development and holds memberships in esteemed organizations like ASC, ASCA, APA, SIOP, SHRM, VNHR, and Delta Epsilon Tau National Honor Society.

Steve’s educational journey includes an Honours Bachelor’s in South East Asia Studies, an MBA from Kookmin University, Seoul, Korea, and an Honours Doctorate in Leadership and Learning from Aspen University, CO, USA. As a dynamic speaker in the “Mental Health in Workforce” session, Steve Pham brings expertise and passion to drive positive change in workplace well-being.

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