Improving access to quality social and medical care for children

With an under-5 mortality of 40 children per 1,000 births, Cambodia belongs to the countries with the highest child mortality in South East Asia. Diagnosis and treatment of childhood diseases are essential to reducing mortality. To ensure a high quality of medical care, Deutsche Bank cooperates with local partners in emerging markets to provide effective support.

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Recently a newly renovated and expanded Outpatient Department in Siem Reap, Cambodia was officially inaugurated. Since 2009 the Deutsche Bank Asia Pacific Foundation has been supporting the Angkor Hospital for Children’s (AHC), with special focus on the Outpatient Department, directly benefitting more than 50,000 children every year. AHC provides outpatient, inpatient, intensive, surgical, and HIV care, as well as other services, free of charge, to over 120,000 underprivileged children in Cambodia every year. The opening was attended by Annie Yeo, Head of Corporate Responsibility, Asia. Among the guests of honour attending the inauguration ceremony were the Minister of Health for Cambodia H.E. Mam Bunheng and the Deputy Governor H.E. Sang Riha. Guests were given a tour of the expanded wing, which would allow the department to see up to 900 paediatric patients daily.

Since the hospital’s inauguration in 1999, the number of patients has increased exponentially. 2013 saw the highest number of medical treatments provided to children, with more than 150,000 children treated. The same year saw AHC reaching a milestone to become an international Non-Government Organisation incorporated in Hong Kong, the USA and Cambodia. The expansion provides a much-needed relief for both the hospital and the patients, leading to increase in capacity and improvement in processes and quality of treatment.

One child the Angkor Hospital for Children could help is Vileam*, a three-year-old boy who lives in Chi Krieng District, around 60 kilometres from Siem Reap. He received a surgery on his second birthday, and is now recovering.

Vileam’s mother was a factory worker in Phnom Penh before her marriage. Vileam’s father, currently employed as a construction worker in Thailand, is only able to visit the family once a year. By the time Vileam reached one, his mother realised that he was not well – his breathing was rapid, he had a poor appetite, and he had difficulty feeding.

Vileam was diagnosed with a heart condition at a local village hospital. His mother could not understand his condition but was fortunately referred to AHC. After travelling a long way to the Hospital in Siem Reap, AHC doctors explained Vileam’s condition clearly and said that he needed medication and quarterly check-ups. If an operation was necessary, he would be put on the waiting list for a cardiac surgical team from overseas. With medication, Vileam’s condition was temporarily improved, but the hole in his heart continued to enlarge. Each month, at great expense and after much difficulty, Vileam’s mother would make three or four trips to AHC.

On December 2, 2013 – Vileam’s second birthday – he received the surgery. Vileam’s mother remarked with great joy, “My son has been reborn!” When Vileam turns six, his mother plans to send him to school, where he will go on to become who he was born to be.

The partnership with the Angkor Hospital for Children is part of Deutsche Bank’s Born to Be programme. Born to Be helps young people to fulfil their potential by providing new skills, confidence and aspirations through education-led projects.

Medical care in Cambodia

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Hospital beds (per 1,000 people) in Cambodia

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