Phnom Penh, June 5, 2013 -- The GE Foundation today celebrated its partnership with Calmette Hospital and the Ministry of Health in the provisioning of medical equipment and funding biomedical engineering training to help Cambodia train existing medical field engineers and capacity build to improve access to healthcare in the country.
Equipment donated as part of the most recent phase of the GE Foundation's Developing Health Globally program includedcritical equipment for hospital services such as maternal and child care, emergency, surgery, radiology and laboratory, such as ultrasounds, x-rays, ventilatorsand monitors. Calmette is a public hospital serving all Cambodians. The GE Foundation also provided clinic application training to hospital staff on the use of the equipment.
Present at the commissioning of the equipment were the Minister of Health, Cambodia H.E. Dr. Mam Bunheng, US Ambassador to Cambodia H.E. William E. Todd, Director General of Calmette hospital, Prof. Chheang Ra, GE Foundation President Bob Corcoran, University of Puthisastra President Puthyvuth Sok and Engineering World Health Country Director Steven Goeby. GE was represented by MyLan Nguyen, CEO for Vietnam and Cambodia and Dararith Lim, Market Development Director, Cambodia.
The GE Foundation also announced the partnership with Ministry of Health on a Biomedical Equipment Technician Training Program for technicians in Cambodia. The collaboration is with Engineering World Health, Calmette National Hospital and the University of Puthisastra located in Phnom Penh as educational partner. The program addresses an important gap in the public health system in the country and a national training curriculum is being developed at the university. The GE Foundation is working with these partners to help the country build sustainable hospitals with quality healthcare facilities. It is estimated that about 40 percent of medical equipment in the developing world is out of service, and that 2/3rd of that can be put back in to service with basic knowledge and locally sourced parts.
Cambodia's Minister of Health Dr. Mam Bunheng said, "We thank the GE Foundation for its generosity not just in equipping our hospitals but more importantly, in the aspect of training our biomedical equipment technicians and lift the quality of healthcare in our hospitals. There is so much to be accomplished and we truly value the assistance that has been given to us. It is a step forward and something good for our country and people. We look forward to partnering with the Foundation and other organizations on future opportunities related to Developing Health Globally."
GE Foundation President Bob Corcoran said, "We couldn't be more pleased with the progress made over the past four years in Cambodia. The results of our strong, local partnerships can be seen in the commissioning of the hospital today, and also at more than 30 medical facilities throughout the country." The GE Foundation has been working with the Ministry of Health and selected healthcare facilities in Cambodia through Developing Health Globally which was first introduced in the country in 2008. The GE Foundation has upgraded the infrastructure and increased access to care at 31 hospitals in 24 provinces in Cambodia.
GE Foundation's Developing Health Globally Program projects are defined through collaboration with Ministries of Health based on local needs. Projects include improving infrastructure with technology and training at public hospitals and clinics, increasing the pipeline of primary care physicians in the public sector, and improving maternal and newborn care to reduce infection and mortality rates.
Launched in 2004, Developing Health Globally has helped to upgrade medical infrastructure and build human capacity in some of the world's most vulnerable communities. The program so far has invested more than $80 million in key areas like biomedical repair, maternal and child health, trauma and surgical care. The investments have been focused in Latin America, Sub-Saharan Africa and Southeast Asia and have helped to improve access to quality healthcare for more than 15 million people worldwide. Additional information and news on Developing Health Globally can be found on www.developinghealthglobally.com.
About the GE Foundation
The GE Foundation, the philanthropic organization of GE, works to solve some of the world's most difficult problems. With its partners, the GE Foundation focuses its efforts in the areas of health, education, the environment and disaster relief. In 2012, the GE family invested more than $200 million to global community and educational needs. For more information, visit www.gefoundation.com.
About Engineering World Health
Engineering World Health is a non-profit organization mobilizing the biomedical engineering community to improve the quality of health care in hospitals serving resource-poor communities of the developing world. With this professional expertise, they install donated and new medical equipment, carry out equipment repairs, and train to build local capacity to both manage and maintain sophisticated equipment. For more information, visit www.ewh.org
Trinh Phuong Lan