Your Venerable Buddhist Monks,
Medical Doctor Béat Richner,
Your Excellencies, Members of the Royal Government,
Your Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen:
Today, I have a great honor and pleasure to join you all in this Ground Breaking Ceremony of the New Construction of Kuntha Bopha I Hospital.
I am very much impressed by and appreciate for the efforts and energy that Dr. Béat Richner has personally contributed to the development of the two Kuntha Bopha Hospitals and Jayavarman VII Hospital since 1992, that they become the future hospitals serving the welfare of Cambodian children and mothers. The Kuntha Bopha hospital has come through many critical milestones and are poised for new activities, with full of hope and assurance.
On behalf of the Royal Government and People of Cambodia, may I express our profound gratitude to Dr. Béat Richner and the generous Swiss People for their direct involvement in improving the health sector in Cambodia, thus improving the living conditions of our Cambodian children. Your support is of great significance for Cambodia’s take-off, and the assistance so far provided to us are invaluable and have been used very effectively.
We all are conscious that every citizen has a right to equal access to healthcare service. With this position, I set out and promote the implementation of the objectives and targets of the Royal Government of Cambodia’s health strategy, aimed at providing every Cambodian citizen, both in urban and rural areas, with access to high quality healthcare.
Certainly, this ambition can be achieved by our collective and unified efforts with the contribution from international community and public institutions, thus making progress towards reclaiming our own destiny in attaining new achievements with the support of our development partners. In this sense, the ground breaking ceremony today to construct new buildings at the Kuntha Bopha I Hospital is indeed another testimony. The expansion of the Kuntha Bopha I requires US$ 2.5 million. I believe this hospital will become one of the great architectural achievements, equipped with modern facilities and qualified staff, and thus actively contribute to the development of health sector in Phnom Penh. I would like to take this opportunity to express our gratitude and appreciation for the patriotic and generous gesture of Oknha Kit Meng, who grants the land for long term use to Kuntha Bopha I, for the benefit of reducing the difficulties and helping the life of Cambodian children.
Cambodia is now with peace and political, social and economic stability, which it had not been the case before. Moreover, the democracy has been deeply rooted from day to day, thus in turn; the public order has also been solidly strengthened.
More than any other time before, Cambodian people across the country express their optimistic and renew their commitments, with full dynamism, motivation and strong determination, toward achieving new successes, whilst, the pillars of the Cambodian society will be gradually improved and strengthened. Thus, people hope that they will be able to take control over their own future, with confidence and happiness. Moreover, Cambodia people can have a clearer long term view of the development in building the future, with hope and strong determination.
All these points of my observation are the facts, reflected in the good results of our reforms in all the sectors of the Royal Government, being further strengthened and deepened.
In this favorable environment, the Royal Government will continue to focus on social development, especially the improvement of health service to be highly effective. Specifically, in the first cabinet meeting of the Third Legislature of 16 July 2004, I set out the Rectangular Strategy for Growth, Employment, Equity and Efficiency in Cambodia. One side of the Strategy is to promote social and economic development through a comprehensive reform program of health sector.
Our health policy has been built up on the basis of healthcare and medicine provision provided to people, through improved quality and safety of health service, as well as strengthened management capacity in the health establishments. With this policy, we are intended to improve the provision of public health aimed at creating such an adequate condition for the admission of all patients without discrimination and with respect of their right to healthcare.
Indeed, we cannot achieve the above targets unless the admission capacity and facilities of hospitals are improved. Thus, I strongly believe that Kuntha Bopha I will indeed contribute to this effort in improving the technical skills and standards for all the hospitals in Cambodia.
As we all are aware, identification of strategies and targets and the availability in term of infrastructure and medicaments are not enough for reaching the defined targets, if there is no participation from qualified and motivated staff. Thus, I always give special attention to the importance of health personnel education and training, as well as the improvement of working and living conditions for those personnel.
Indeed, actions to develop a health system of high quality for people are integral to an overall economic system. In this sense, the improvement of health system will actually contribute to national development.
Nevertheless, we are facing many other challenges, in addition to improving the delivery of health service, such as the fights against malaria, HIV/AIDS and other diseases, as well as reducing infant and maternal mortality. With such multi-faced challenges, we shall address the issues primarily with our own resource and capacity, especially giving importance to the prevention of transmittal diseases as a core element in the implementation of our health policy, while cooperating with our development partners.
To this end, the RGC’s health strategy has covered the following strategies: the provision of basic health for everyone, decentralization of financial and administrative functions, human resource development, and special attention given to the crack down and prevention of infected diseases, as well as the strengthening of IT in health sector.
Kuntha Bopha I and Jayavarman 7 are of great magnificence with such a modern facilities and equipments. Now, we can use the management system of Kuntha Bopha as a model for other hospitals in Cambodia. The current performance of the hospital has resulted from longtime efforts and works of Dr. Béat Richner, the management and all the staff.
Once again, on behalf of the Royal Government and People of Cambodia may I express our profound gratitude to Dr. Béat Richner and the Swiss generous people.
I thank and appreciate the management and staff of the two hospitals, Kuntha Bopha and Jayavarman7, for their contribution to the building of this important health infrastructure. This indeed testifies your expertise in the area.
In closing, I would like to reiterate the Royal Government ambition of focusing on improving the health status of our Cambodian people. I believe the new buildings, the construction of which we launch today, will help address the issues I raised earlier.
Finally, I wish you all the five gems of Buddhist blessing. Strongly convinced by our cooperation, may I declare the opening of the Ground Breaking Ceremony!