SIF and KKH Strengthen Partnership to Enhance Woman and Child Health in Asia

Singapore, 2 December 2011 — In conjunction with the Singapore International Foundation’s (SIF) International Volunteer Day celebration this evening, the SIF and KK Women’s and Children’s Hospital (KKH) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU).

This marks a significant milestone in the partnership that will see the two organisations collaborate more closely on projects to build the capacity of overseas health professionals and community groups to deliver quality healthcare services to women and children across Asia. Through specialised skills training and providing basic services in the areas of women’s and children’s health, the collaboration will facilitate the participation of more KKH staff as volunteers, including medical and allied health professionals, as well as support workers.

Since 1996, KKH has supported over 10 SIF international volunteerism projects, which included nearly 70 specialist missions. These projects, spanning three to four years on an average, aim to enhance the clinical and medical management skills of women’s and children’s healthcare professionals in areas such as neonatal care, reconstructive surgery, palliative care, paediatric emergency and intensive care, obstetrics and gynaecology. They were carried out in Cambodia, India, Laos, Vietnam, Indonesia, and Myanmar.

Over the past 15 years, the SIF-KKH collaboration on many meaningful health projects has brought significant benefits to communities around Asia. Many women and children are enjoying a better quality of life due to the enhanced standard of care they have received, which have significantly reduced the incidence of mortality and disability. For instance, in Cambodia, the paediatric emergency care project with the National Paediatric Hospital helped to reduce the infant mortality rate in the emergency room by 22 percentage points, from 56% to 34%. Meanwhile, a midwifery project in Laos has brought about safer childbirth practices and better quality of maternal care for expectant women.

“The three-year SIF-KKH MoU solidifies and reaffirms the synergy and trust that have already been established between us. In line with the SIF’s vision of building a better world through shared, ideas, skills and experiences, we look forward to bringing our partnership with KKH to greater heights and will build upon the foundation of good work done thus far, so as to uplift the lives of women and children across Asia,” says Ms Jean Tan, SIF Executive Director.

“Each volunteering project presents us a new opportunity to influence the well-being of women and children in our neighbourhood and also enrich our own experiences and practices. This partnership brings even greater prospects and a renewed commitment for us to contribute to the overall development of healthcare expertise across the region,” says Associate Professor Anette Jacobsen, Chairman, Division of Surgery and Clinical Director, International Medical Programme, KKH.

In addition to the Paediatric Cardiac Care Project in Vietnam, Paediatric Intensive Care Project in Cambodia and Obstetric Emergency Care Project in Laos, the SIF and KKH are currently exploring a new project with the Nalam Centre in India to train the centre’s and local hospitals’ staff in case management and medical social work practice to better support children in the community who are living with HIV.



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