On 15 April 2019, the Secretary General of Health, Dato’ Seri Dr. Chen Chaw Min witnessed the signing of Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between the Faculty of Medicine, University of Malaya (UM) and St John’s Ambulance with the Chang Gung Memorial Foundation, Taiwan in a historic international collaboration in medical care and research.
Chang Gung Medical Foundation, a nonprofit organisation, and the largest medical organisation in Taiwan was represented by its President, Ms. Diana Wang, Steering Committee Chairman, Professor Chen Wen Jin and Kaohsiung Chang Gung Memorial Hospital (CGMH) Superintendent, Dr. Wang Chih Chi.
UM was represented by Associate Professor Dr. Yong Zulina Zubairi, Associate Vice-Chancellor (International) and the Dean of the Faculty of Medicine, Dato’ Professor Dr. Adeeba Kamarulzaman. Meanwhile, St. John Ambulance Malaysia an NGO founded in 1908, providing pre-hospital and first aid services was represented by Dato’ Lai See Meng.
”University of Malaya is looking forward to establishing a strong collaboration with Chang Gung Memorial Foundation and its ten specialist hospitals and Chang Gung Medical University in student and academic exchanges, specialist training and research. We hope to initiate joint seminars in areas of mutual interest such as Urology and Infectious Diseases”, said Dato’ Adeeba.
Professor Chen noted that, “CGMH has had 42 years of developing outstanding clinical care has the biggest medical facility in the country, serving one-tenth of Taiwanese patients every year.” It is true that many medical/surgical techniques developed at CGMH are firsts in the world and it holds patent rights in many of these cutting edge devices and techniques. CGMH has had the opportunity to learn from developed countries in the past, in return, CGMH feels that it is now in a position to share its experiences with other countries in order to improve healthcare quality and public health in communicable and non-communicable diseases management with its Malaysian counterparts.
On behalf of the Chang Gung Medical Foundation, President Wang symbolically presented a mock bed diagram of 300 unit electrical ICU/HDU beds to Kuala Lumpur Hospital and 15 units of hemodialysis machines to St. John Ambulance Malaysia. Dato’ Lai See Meng, Chief Commander of St John in accepting this donation said that the St John’s Ambulance Service is indeed extremely grateful to CGMH for this timely gift to replace its very old dialysis machines that will enable them to continue to serve the public.
Chang Gung Hospital and Orient EuroPharma will also co-donate a set of Argus II retinal prosthesis to the Faculty of Medicine, UM and will be involved in training the university eye surgeons in this delicate surgery that will be the first of its kind for Malaysia and lay the foundation that benefits visually-challenged people in Malaysia in future. Associate Professor Dr. Yong Zulina in her acceptance speech remarked, “This will provide a chance to bring the light back to a visual-challenged patient in Malaysia, can you imagine the joy of the patient and family”.
According to Dr. Lee Toong Chow, the coordinator for this event, this collaboration between academia and non-profit organisations with CGMH will bring enormous benefit to the public. "We are extremely grateful to Chang Gung Memorial Foundation for their generous contribution to Malaysia that has amounted to RM3 million", he added.