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Myanmar UK Health Alliance Newsletter

January 2020 
Happy new year and welcome to the Myanmar UK Health Alliance Newsletter!
We hope that these newsletters are informative and interesting, bringing you the latest updates, news and events. If so, please do spread the word and encourage others to join by emailing May.Khin@THET.Org. If not, you are able to unsubscribe via the link at the bottom of the page.
Dorcas Gwata, Professor Myat Thandar, Dr Thinn Thinn Hlaing, Judith Edwards and Dr Thidar Hla attending the THET annual conference in September 2019 
Recent Updates and Highlights


Strengthening Specialised Paediatric & Neonatal Nursing Care in District and State/Regional Hospitals in Myanmar 
The Ministry of Health and Sports (MoHS), the Royal College of Paediatric and Child Health (RCPCH) and UNICEF hosted a workshop on 12th August in Yangon.

The objectives of the workshop were:

1. To bring together key Myanmar stakeholders with support from RCPCH and the UK Royal College of Nursing (RCN) to develop plans to improve specialised neonatal and paediatric capacity and patient care effectiveness of the Myanmar nursing workforce.

2. To identify current workforce, professional and service delivery challenges and the impact they have on developing specialist nursing in Myanmar.

3. To consider if and how the specialisation of paediatric and neonatal nursing could be developed as a pilot for a wider model of practice.

The nursing directorate from MoHS, RCPCH representatives and key nurses from a variety of regions in Myanmar attended and discussed future plans. Outcomes from this workshop have been shared with the Ministry for implementation.


THET’s Advisor Dorcas Gwata visits Myanmar 
Dorcas Gwata is a Global Health Consultant, specialising in global mental health and has a nursing background. In the UK her research focuses on mental health interventions for young people exposed to violence and exploitation, many of whom are from minority groups. This visit reflected the enormous enthusiasm and desire across the THET partnership network to support innovation in health care and develop greater cross-cultural learning, across the global health community as a whole.
Highlights of her visit included a visit to Yangon Mental Health Hospital and community clinics, a meeting with community nurses and the Global Mental Health workshop at the University of Nursing, Yangon. For more details, please see:
Creating a positive view of childbirth
The first Positive Birth Movement group in Myanmar was recently established in Yangon by two women with a keen interest in this field. Faye Callaghan is a midwife and current fellow on the Improving Global Health programme run by Health Education England. Nelie Janssen is a childbirth educator and a pre/postnatal fitness instructor. She has run childbirth preparation workshops and fitness classes in Yangon for three years and was keen to find a way to challenge attitudes around birth after hearing her clients report negative experiences.

Two former nurses from Myanmar, May Kyatno Khin and May Phyo Thu, support the group with local knowledge of the healthcare system and translate at group meetings. In Myanmar many women have little choice around their birth options, or certainly many feel this way and are often not well informed. The group aims to provide women with some basic skills to talk to their healthcare providers about what a 'positive birth' means to them and how they might achieve it.

International Patient Safety Day 
17th September
The MoHS celebrated World Patient Safety Day at Kempinski Hotel, Naypyitaw, with the support from UK-Aid, WHO and the Rangoon General Hospital Reinvigoration Charitable Trust (RGHR). His Excellency Minister Dr. Myint Htwe gave an opening speech followed by short speeches from DFID Country Director Dr. Rurik Marsden, WHO country representative Dr. Stephen Josh and the trustee of RGHR Dr. Thinn Thinn Hlaing.
The objectives of this event were:

1. To bring key stakeholders from the hospital, ministry and wider groups of healthcare professionals together to highlight and reinforce the importance of patient safety for people in Myanmar.

2. To increase the awareness of patient safety measures by public and health professionals.
There were approximately 150 attendees including: senior officials from MoHS, hospital management directors from hospitals from different regions, doctors and nurses. Two hospitals (Naypyitaw & Central Women Hospital, Yangon) received the award for best practice in patient safety.


Faculty members of the University of Medicine (1) visit UK for Skills Teacher Training 
Two faculty members (Dr. Saw Yu Thandar and Dr. Yin Mar Oo) underwent five weeks of skills training in teaching methods in the UK. This training is funded by RGHR in collaboration with Nottingham University Hospital, Trent Simulation Centre and Cambridge University Hospital Deakin Simulation Centre. The National Skill Simulation Centre is being built at the University of Medicine (1) with the aim to be opened in December 2019. The trained faculty members will champion the delivery of innovative skills teaching at the centre.

Ministry of Health & Sports Delegation visit Cambridge & London Major Trauma Centres 
Cambridge Global Health Partnership invited seven senior MoHS officials lead by Professor Zaw Wai Soe of University of Medicine (1), Yangon to observe the major trauma centres and pathways at Cambridge and Imperial College Hospital in the last week of September. This is to support the initiative of MoHS to develop the major trauma centres in Yangon Region in the near future.
The delegation also met with representatives from the Royal College of Emergency Medicine, Royal College of General Practitioners and Royal College of Anaesthesia to discuss future collaborative training initiatives.

Tropical Health & Education Trust Annual Conference
26th & 27th September

THET invited Deputy Director General Dr. Thidar Hla, MoHS and the Vice-President of General Practitioners Society Dr. Myint Oo and the secretary Dr. Than Soe to join the annual conference to share the experiences of different global health partnership projects around the world.

Myanmar-UK Health Alliance Thematic Group Meeting Event
28th September
The main objectives of the event were to provide an opportunity for individuals engaged in the Myanmar UK Health Alliance (MUKHA) and other members of the Burmese diaspora in the UK to network, be updated on the progress of MUKHA and the recent partnership work. There were two group work sessions held to allow time for attendees to feed into the future of MUKHA and what can be improved and implemented to better serve engaged diaspora and partners in Myanmar.
This event differed from the previous event in January as the invitations to attend were targeted to Burmese diaspora and partners who were related to one of three of the thematic groups: GP training, Pathology services and Medical Education. A total of fifty attendees joined the event and outcomes will be shared with MUKHA members.

Please see the full evaluation here:

We wish all the best to our partners for 2020 and look forward to continuing and expanding the work of MUKHA throughout the year.

Join our Facebook page for upcoming events and updates: or for more information please contact 

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