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#375654 - 05/05/10 08:42 AM Ground broken for pediatric center
Marty Offline

Ground broken for multi-million dollars pediatric center

sandford 1A major investment in the health sector was launched today with the groundbreaking of a pediatrics healthcare centre next to Belize Healthcare Partners that donated the land for the first of its kind clinic. The state of the art multi-million dollar project is linked to the Sanford Children’s Clinic based in South Dakota and is its first international clinic. The new Sanford Children’s Clinic is being made possible as a result of a two million dollar donation from The Hayward Charitable Belize Trust, the former majority owner of Belize Telemedia Limited. The Hayward Trust’s donation was procured by the Belize Healthcare Charitable Trust, which is the part owner of Belize Healthcare Partners. The Belize Healthcare Charitable Trust is collaborating in this venture with Sanford Health and Belize Healthcare Partners. The project will take about a year to come to fruition and will provide pediatrics care to the growing young population. The new clinic will be designed in a castle theme similar to other Sanford clinics. A team of individuals representing The Belize Healthcare Charitable Trust, Sanford and Belize Healthcare Partners, as well as the US Ambassador Vinai Thummalapally, symbolically dug into the soil to pave the way for construction of the international clinic. News Five’s Marion Ali was on hand for the historic event.

Marion Ali, Reporting

The symbolic breaking of ground on the compound of the Belize Health Care Partners this morning marked the official start of what will be advance high quality paediatric care in Belize. Renowned for its presence all over the US, Sanford Clinics and hospitals have been providing valuable medical services to children. But now this acclaimed medical institution is expanding its wings to open its first international paediatric clinic thousands of miles away – and in Belize. President of Sanford Clinics, Dr. Dan Blue says the new initiative was made possible through old linkages.

Dr Dan Blue, President, Sanford Clinic

dr. dan blue

dr. dan blue

“Dr. Vinney has practiced in South Dakota so there was a connection. Denny Sanford is an individual who is a philanthropist who gave Sanford Health four hundred million dollars back in 2007 and part of that gift—we came up with a list of initiatives that we’re gonna carry out and one of the initiatives is to establish paediatric clinics globally in the United States as well as internationally. So we put out a request and Dr. Vinney knew about that, contacted us and that’s how we got introduced. And the more we learned about Belize and how this could work, the more we were really very excited.”

Marion Ali

“I’m sure you have many countries that also put up a bid for this possibility, can you tell us what was the determining factor behind deciding on Belize?”

Dr. Dan Blue

“Well, there’s a number of things and we’re looking to build twenty of these over the next ten years both in the United States and internationally. So we’re working with other countries right now too.”

vinai thummalapally

vinai thummalapally

While Sanford is working with other countries, the US, which is home to the foundation, is convinced that it is an investment well-placed.

Vinai Thummalapally, US Ambassador

“Investment in the wellbeing of children is literally an investment in the future. A healthy start in life means greater health as a young adult and improved production and longevity. Those of you who are involved in this, in the planning and the construction of this clinic, should be proud to be making such a great contribution to Belize.”

Expected to be completed by summer of 2011, the nine thousand square foot institution will offer services never before administered in Belize and will be able to accommodate up to seventy children with ages up to eighteen years. Dr. Wendy Rios will head the operations.

Dr. Wendy Rios, Paediatrician, Belize Healthcare Partners

dr. wendy rios

dr. wendy rios

“We’re going to provide all the specialist like endocrinologist, oncologist, cardiologist, a lot of specialists that we don’t have here in Belize and we want to provide all these kinds of specialists.”

Marion Ali

“Just the other day we saw little Janay was hospitalized in the adult hospital right over there. She was in the intensive care unit after being shot in an unfortunate shooting. Will the services that this paediatric clinic offers, be more advanced than what Janay was getting in the adult section?”

Dr. Wendy Rios

“Yes, basically with Janay we try to give her the best service that we have here in Belize. BHPL has everything for child for her age but obviously we need something more specified for kids; a nice ICU specially for kids, a nice operating theatre specially for kids, you know, special nurses, special equipment everything for kids.”

Marion Ali

“Paintings on the wall.”

Dr. Wendy Rios

“Exactly, everything will be different.”

dr. muthugounder venugopal

dr. muthugounder venugopal

Dr. Muthugounder Venugopal, CEO, Belize Health Care Partners

“I’m delighted to announce today that two million dollars is being provided by the Hayward Charitable Belize Trust enabling this project to move forward more swiftly. I’m grateful to the Hayward Charitable Belize Trust for making this contribution and to Belize Healthcare Charitable Trust for facilitating that effort.”

For the sick child receiving treatment, these custom-made amenities and services will go along way on the road to their recovery. But if as a parent you were wondering the prices that will accompany the service, a Sanford press release says those will be billed according to Belizean guidelines and common practices for healthcare clinics. Marion Ali for News Five.

sandford 2Also in attendance at the ground-breaking event were Former Prime Minister, Said Musa, Leader of the Opposition, John Briceño, British High Commissioner, Patrick Ashford and other notables from the corporate and health sectors.

Channel 5

#375807 - 05/06/10 10:51 AM Re: Ground broken for pediatric center [Re: Marty]
Marty Offline

Sanford Health Breaks Ground on Children’s Clinic in Belize

- Press Release - Central America is one step closer to having more pediatric healthcare closer to home after the groundbreaking on May 4 of the first Sanford Children’s international clinic. The clinic in Belize City, Belize will open by the summer of 2011. It will provide pediatric care to the growing population and be designed in a castle theme similar to other Sanford Children’s facilities. Belize population is about 320,000 with 160,000 of them children.

“There is clearly a need for additional pediatric care in Belize, and this groundbreaking brings children closer to more healthcare in the region,” stated Dave Link, Sanford Health-MeritCare Senior Executive Vice President. “We are also grateful for our partners in this project. Together, we will improve the health of children in the country.”

Sanford Children’s continues to work with a variety of individuals and organizations in the development and on-going operations of Sanford Children’s Clinic in Belize. This includes, the Belize Healthcare Charitable Trust (BHCT) who recently donated $2 million Belize dollars ($1 million U.S.) to support the clinic. Belize Healthcare Partners Limited, a full-service hospital located in Belize City, is donating land near its facility for the new clinic.

The Sanford Children’s Clinic building will be approximately 9,000 square feet and be shared with Belize Healthcare Partners Limited. The hospital will use its portion of the building for outpatient services for adults.

“We are excited about this project as it will bring additional pediatric services to the children of Belize,” said Vene Venugopal, MD, FACS Medical Director and CEO, Belize Healthcare Partners, Limited.

Sanford Children’s Clinic in Belize will be connected to a comprehensive team of pediatric subspecialists with Sanford Children’s Hospital in Sioux Falls, SD. It is the first international clinic and the second Sanford Children’s World Clinic announced by Sanford Health as part of the initiatives outlined after a $400 million donation from South Dakota businessman and philanthropist Denny Sanford in 2007. A portion of the donation is being used to establish a network of Sanford Children's World Clinics in underserved communities throughout the world in order to expand access to pediatric care for children who might otherwise go without. Sanford opened its first Sanford Children’s location in Duncan, OK in August 2009 and recently announced plans for a location in Oceanside, CA.

About Sanford Health-MeritCare

Sanford Health & MeritCare consists of two long-standing health systems in the Dakotas who merged in 2009; Sanford Health based in Sioux Falls, SD and MeritCare based in Fargo, ND. The largest rural not-for-profit healthcare system in the nation, Sanford Health & MeritCare serves six states (North Dakota, South Dakota, Minnesota, Iowa, Nebraska, Oklahoma). It includes 30 hospitals with a total of 1,600 beds, as well as more than 800 physicians in numerous clinics in more than 70 specialty areas of medicine. With more than 18,000 employees, Sanford Health & MeritCare is the largest employer in North and South Dakota. For more information, visit www.sanfordmeritcare.com.

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