From the Worldwide Faith News archives

Free Open Heart Surgery Gives Cambodian Children New Life

From "Beckett, John" <>
Date 26 Apr 2000 11:43:16

ANN Bulletin
Adventist News Network
Seventh-day Adventist Church World Headquarters
April 25, 2000
Free Open Heart Surgery Gives Cambodian Children New Life
Penang, Malaysia .... [ANN]

Penang Adventist Hospital provided free heart surgery for three Cambodian
children last week, setting in motion what hospital chief executive Teddric
Mohr calls a "miracle project."  The three girls, aged two, five and seven,
were the first of 19 needy children who will be flown to Penang to receive
the life-giving corrective heart surgery. This "Gift of Life" program was
set up by the hospital late last year to provide free open heart surgery to
Cambodian children who would otherwise be unable to afford the US$4,000-plus

"A whole bunch of miracles have helped bring this project together," says
Mohr, who points to the financial support given by both local and New York
Rotary Clubs, and corporate sponsors Malaysian Airlines, who provided free
transport, and Hewlett Packard, who supplied a cardio-echo machine and
technician for the screening trip to Cambodia late last year.  "Each life is
precious," Mohr told Malaysian newspaper The Star recently.  "You never know
if the baby you are saving is the next prime minister, Mother Theresa or a
great scientist." 
Mohr initiated the Cambodian "Gift of Life" project in1999 after meeting a
poverty-stricken heart patient during a business trip to Cambodia. Under the
program, the children will travel from Cambodia to the hospital in groups of
two to six along with their mothers and a Cambodian doctor, who will help
with translation and assist in post-operative care.  Renowned pediatric
heart surgeon Dr. Leonard Bailey will lead a team from Loma Linda University
Medical Center, located in California, to help local surgeons deal with the
increase in open-heart operations due to the "Gift of Life" program. Mohr
says that the hospital hopes to extend the program in the coming years to
help children in the Philippines, Indonesia and Pakistan.

Since the Penang Adventist Hospital set up its heart fund for needy patients
in 1998, 44 adults and 42 children have received free heart surgery.  Penang
Adventist Hospital was established 75 years ago and started its open-heart
program in 1987.  Currently nine cardiologists and two cardio-thoracic
surgeons undertake as many as four open-heart surgeries per day.  [Bettina

Contact Information: 
Communications Department
General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists
12501 Old Columbia Pike
Silver Spring, MD 20904-6600

Phone: 301-680-6300

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