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Project HOPE joined the call for a renewed focus on the health of China’s 240 million children and is taking aim at pediatric cancer, one of the country’s top public health challenges, as it celebrates a stunning run of success for Shanghai Children’s Medical Center (SCMC) on its 20th anniversary.
Project HOPE CEO, Tom Kenyon, M.D., M.P.H., bolstered 14 CEOs of children’s hospitals from around the world in a pledge for further international cooperation on child health promotion under the “Shanghai Initiative,” announced at the 2018 Pujian Forum of Pediatrics in the eastern Chinese city today.
Dr. Kenyon said that with China’s large population of children and evolving health care needs, the need for advanced pediatric care represents one of the country’s most pressing health care challenges.
“China’s large population, diverse demography, and rapid economic development have had a major impact on the needs for and distribution of health care services across the country,” said Dr. Kenyon.
Over the past 30 years, the United States-based global health development and disaster relief organization has helped train doctors and nurses at SCMC and equipped the hospital to provide a wide range of care including in cardiology, oncology, neonataology, chronic diseases, epilepsy, and nutrition. The Shanghai hospital cares for more than 1.5 million children per year, including 3,500 open heart operations.
One of SCMC’s pioneering programs -- at the forefront of a new frontier of care in China – is pediatric cancer therapy. Tumors among children have increased at a rate of 25% over the past 30 years. After the opening of a new Hematology Oncology tower in June 2012, the center now treats more than 500 new cancer patients a year – and Project HOPE has trained the doctors and nurses who perform this vital work.
Project HOPE announced a partnership with GE Healthcare on Wednesday for a three-year program that will increase the use of precision data to better diagnose tumors in children and design targeted therapies. The program will also train 150 physicians to meet a shortage in skilled practitioners in imaging radiology. To alleviate the psychological burden young patients face in fighting a life-threatening disease, the venture will also create an arts space, where children can paint and learn pottery and sculpture.
Dr. Kenyon also celebrated the 20 years of excellence represented by SCMC, which will from now on be known as National Children’s Medical Center – Shanghai, thanks to the cooperation between Project HOPE and China’s Ministry of Health.
“The lifesaving impact and expertise we have witnessed SCMC achieve in just two decades is awe inspiring. It’s remarkable to see children with complex illnesses get the care that they so deserve – and witness firsthand he hope in the eyes of their parents,” he said.
About Project HOPE
Founded in 1958, Project HOPE is a leader in global health development and emergency relief programs. An international nonprofit organization, we save lives and improve health, especially among women and children. We accomplish our mission by improving the knowledge, abilities and tools of the health workforce to deliver high quality health services to communities in need. With programs in more than 25 countries, we work at the epicenter of today’s greatest health challenges including infectious and chronic diseases, disasters and health crises, maternal, neonatal and child health and the policies that impact how health care is delivered. Learn more at www.projecthope.org and follow us on Twitter @projecthopeorg.
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