More young heart patients to benefit from Miracle Baby programme in Penang

GEORGE TOWN: More children suffering from congenital heart disease are expected to benefit from the Miracle Baby programme launched by Penang Hospital.

The programme by the Health Ministry, Universiti Tunku Abdul Rahman (UTAR) and Sri Sathya Sai Sanjeevani Hospital (SSSSH) in India would allow surgeries to be carried out at minimal cost besides allowing transfer of knowledge, expertise and skills to train local specialists and paramedics.

Health director-general Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah said with the collaboration, paediatric heart surgery services would be carried out at Penang Hospital.

"Through this programme, cardiologists here would collaborate with the surgical team from SSSSH India to perform heart surgery, while UTAR will coordinate logistics with the help and support of the public," he said in a video during the programme's launch on Wednesday (Dec 7).

He added that since the launch of the pilot programme on Nov 28, 12 patients including three from Sabah had received treatment at Penang Hospital.

Apart from benefitting less fortunate children, Dr Noor Hisham said the programme would also spur the ministry's plan to provide more paediatric heart surgery services at Hospital Seberang Jaya where its expansion is expected to be completed next year.

Also present at the launch were UTAR chairman Tan Sri Dr Sak Cheng Lum and SSSSH chairman Dr Sreenivas Chodagam.

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