Through this initiative, Dr Moopen’s Foundation will provide free pediatric cardiac surgery to fifty patients from the Philippines.
The announcements were made by Padma Shri Dr. Azad Moopen, Chairman of DM Healthcare and founder of Dr. Moopen’s Foundation, during an event held at Makati Shangri-La Hotel in Manila.
The event was attended by Mr. Enrique Ona, Secretary of Health, Philippines, Mr. Amit Dasgupta, Ambassador, Indian Embassy to Philippines, the senior officials of Philippine government, the senior officials of DM Healthcare, and the donee children and their guardians.
Commenting on the initiative, Dr. Moopen, said, “We are very pleased to announce this initiative in this wonderful country. As a healthcare provider, we believe it is very important to reach out to people across geographies and extent our services to those who really need it. This country and its people are very close to our hearts. As an employer of choice to thousands of Filipino staff at DM healthcare, we wanted to give back to the community that is integral to our growth, success and quality. This is a small step to begin with and the first of our activities planned towards enhancing the health and wellbeing of the community at large.”
“We are thankful to the authorities in the Philippines whose support has made it possible for us to launch this initiative here and help save the lives of little children. Pediatric cardiology is a critical area of medical care. We are glad that, through this initiative, we would be able to extend this care to those who need it. ‘Save The Little Hearts’ programme is among our first charity initiatives in Philippines. We plan to extend our not-for-profit activities here with a large gamut of services aiming to promote overall wellness in the Philippines. Our aim for our charitable foundation, Healing Touch, is to truly take it beyond boundaries and reach needy people across geographies,” Dr. Moopen added.
Commenting on the initiative, Secretary Enrique Ona, said, “It is with deep respect that I commend the Dr. Moopen’s Foundation for its philanthropic work in the Middle East, India, and now here in the Philippines. I am happy to note that your organization has established its local headquarters in the country. The Department of Health (DOH) finds it gratifying to have worked with DM Healthcare Foundation for the benefit of pediatric patients with congenital heart defects (CHD) in the Philippines. Congenital heart defect, with its high mortality rate for patients in their first year of life, is a challenge not only in the Philippines but for the rest of Asia, Europe, and the United States. “Save The Little Hearts Project” is a crucial undertaking that will save lives of Filipino children with CHD and will undoubtedly make a difference in the lives of the patients and their families. As the lead agency responsible for the health needs of the Filipino people, we at the DOH share with Dr. Moopen’s Foundations common vision of providing healthcare to those who need it most.”
As part of this initiative, Dr Moopen’s Foundation will work closely with some government hospitals in the Philippines to select young patients with heart diseases based on their critical need for treatment. The patients will be recommended for treatment at a hospital under the DM Healthcare network based on the critical condition of their disease.
Minor surgeries that can be treated within the Philippines will be carried out under complete supervision and funding by Dr Moopen’s Foundation. Patients sent to India will be rendered comprehensive medical care at a hospital under the DM Healthcare network, including MIMS (Malabar Institute of Medical Sciences Ltd), tertiary care referral hospital in Kerala.
The initiative is already under process with two patients already successfully treated for Congenial Heart Defects (CHD) at the Philippine General Hospital and a list of patients selected and approved for DM Healthcare’s underwriting of the cardiac surgery.
In line with the Save The Little Hearts initiative, Dr Moopen’s Foundation has launched a Facebook campaign, 1Like 1Heart To Save, where every Like on the Facebook page of Save the Little Hearts counts to give free surgery to children with CHD. With every Like, the organization has committed to donate Php100 (AED 9.03) towards the initiative thereby extending the reach of the cause. The Facebook page for the initiative has already garnered over 5,000 Likes from its first week of launch, and continues to grow in popularity across the Philippines and beyond.
This initiative targets children with CHD that come from families that are too poor to afford the life-saving operations needed to ensure that they survive to adulthood. If left untreated, CHD can be fatal where newborns with the defect face an increased risk of mortality within their first year of life. In cases where children with CHD live through their first year, they may still experience compromised health, developmental delays, as well as possible complications from their condition in severe cases. These patients would still need cardiac surgery in order to live healthy, normal, and productive lives.
The ‘Save The Little Heart’ programme is the first of the charitable activities planned by Dr Moopen’s Foundation in the Philippines and beyond, across various geographies, under the ‘Healing Touch’ initiative. Aiming to fulfill its promise to deliver ‘Care Beyond Boundaries’, Dr Moopen’s Foundation aims to continue its ongoing initiatives such as adult and pediatric cardiac and other surgical programmes, setting up of standalone dialysis centres, early diseases detection centres and cancer screening programmes, mobile clinics, village adoption programmes, CSR Programmes on Health Awareness and General Interventions in healthcare activities. All of the not-for-profit healthcare related activities will be carried out under the umbrella of ‘Healing Touch’ by Dr. Moopen’s Foundation.
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