GE Foundation has been actively working on maternal and child health programs in Cambodia over the past decade through equipment donation, safe water treatment systems in health facilities, and most recently, the Safe Surgery 2020 program.
GEF is partnering with Dalberg, Jhpiego, Assist International, Harvard Medical School’s Program for Global Surgery and Social Change, and the Cambodian Ministry of Health to implement the Safe Surgery 2020 program, officially launched in March 2019. SS2020 is working to improve the quality of and access to surgical services for pregnant women. Jhpiego’s leadership and clinical skills programs, Assist International’s Touch Surgery program, and the World Federation of Societies of Anesthesiologists Safe Obstetric Anesthesia course all focus on helping surgeons, nurses, and anesthetists provide the highest quality care to women with obstetric complications and their infants. The Sterile Processing Education Charitable Trust’s program makes C-sections safer by training equipment sterilization teams to ensure each surgical instrument is correctly sterilized and safe for use, reducing surgical site infections and sepsis. Project ECHO, which will begin in May 2019, allows all surgical team members to remain in contact with mentors, continue to review and update clinical skills, and discuss management of complex cases with instructors and peers through regular telementoring meetings. The BMET (biomedical engineer technician) Training Program helps save lives by teaching technicians how to maintain and repair critical medical equipment. In addition to these training activities, the Safe Surgery program is also donating suites of GE operating room equipment like anesthesia machines and patient monitors to give hospitals the tools they need to serve patients well.
Training occurs at the program hub, Calmette Hospital, with surgical team participants from Calmette, Kampong Speu Hospital, Kampong Cham Hospital, Takeo Hospital, and Chuy Chumneas Hospital. While several programs have already completed their initial training activities, much of the program will be rolled out in summer 2019.
From 2015 – 2017, Assist International and Emory University’s Safe Water Program worked to provide water treatment systems and WASH (water, sanitation, and hygiene) education at health centers throughout Cambodia. Safe Water is critical for maternal and neonatal health, especially at health facilities that need clean water for safe birth practices and patient drinking water. Through the program efforts at 10 hospitals, 10 water treatment systems with piping were installed, 15 sinks for hand washing were installed, 359 clinicians and staff were trained on WASH, and 27 technicians were trained to maintain and repair water treatment systems. Now, an estimated 1,100 patients and staff have access to safe treated water daily. The Safe Water Program worked at the following health care facilities: Kampong Thom Hospital, Oudong Hospital, Koh Thom Hospital, Baray Santuk Hospital, Suong Hosptial, Sampov Loun Hosptial, Thmar Kol Hospital, Bun Rany Hun Sen Rokarkoaong Mukkampoul Hospital, Kampong Tralach Hospital, and Kampong Trach Hospital.