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First kidney transplant at Children’s Hospital in Burma

The Yangon Children Hospital in Myanmar, Burma welcomed an ISN Educational Ambassador from the National University of Singapore to teach about dialysis and transplantation. This educational visit led to the local medical team carrying out the first pediatric renal transplantation at the hospital.

Kar Hui Ng from the National University of Singapore spent a week at Yangon Children Hospital, Myanmar, Burma. She liaised with the team at the host institution to set up a hands-on training course on dialysis and transplantation, specifically tailored to the needs of local doctors.

Following the course, the local medical team carried out the first pediatric renal transplantation. Dr Ng explains how it attracted attention from Burma’s Ministry of Health, which has now pledged to increase resources into pediatric nephrology. ‘In the meantime, they have set up a charity foundation, which allows sustainable funding for their work,’ she says.

Dr Ng adds that the program especially helped the local medical professionals gain the confidence and infrastructure to perform their first transplant. ‘More importantly, the transplant team put their services in the limelight and will further attract more resources,’ she says.

On the experience, the ISN Educational Ambassador explains: ‘I learnt about the resilience and humility of the doctors and nurses, despite them having to practice in low-resource settings.’

By joining the ISN Educational Ambassador Program, host institutions can receive the guidance they need to develop new services, community-based research or screening programs.

Through bespoke and interactive learning, the ISN Educational Program helps renal departments in low-income countries enhance their workforce’s skills to meet the needs of patients and their families. They can also gain the support and skills to develop a working nephrology unit to deal with government and financial grant schemes.

Since the launch of the program in 2010, there have been more than 150 ISN Educational Ambassador visits. Find out how to host an ISN Educational Ambassador, HERE.

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