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Japan Donates Medical Equipment to Save Lives during Childbirth

PHNOM PENH: The Government of Japan has made generous contributions to Cambodia’s health and agricultural sectors in two handover ceremonies this week with donations of ambulances, tractors and lifesaving medical equipment to support safe childbirth.

On May 12, Japanese Ambassador to Cambodia, Ueno Atsushi attended a ceremony alongside Permanent Secretary of State at the Ministry of Health, Yuok Sambath, during which the Government of Japan, through the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), handed over ten new ambulances, 140 midwifery kits, ten vacuum extractors, and 400 sets of compression suits used to prevent shock during childbirth.

Cambodia’s Ministry of Health has made excellent progress in reproductive health, especially concerning childbirth practices. According to a report submitted to the World Health Organization in April, 99% of Cambodian women are provided specialist healthcare during labor resulting in a significant decline in infant mortality rates. Japan’s recent donations further contribute to Cambodia’s mission to provide “healthcare for all.”

UNFPA focuses on achieving three transformative results which are: a Cambodia where no women die giving birth; where all families have access to family planning support and commodities; and where all women and girls are free from violence and abuse.

 “The Ministry of Health would like to thank the Japanese Government and UNFPA Cambodia for supporting Cambodia's health system and ensuring all mothers' and newborns' health are safe during childbirth,” said Dr. Yuok Sambath.

Ambassador Atsushi went on to praise diplomatic relations between the two countries, saying, “This year marks the 70th Anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Japan and Cambodia. The Government of Japan has been supporting the efforts to save maternal and newborn lives and improve child health in Cambodia for a long time. Now the health conditions have improved, however, there still remains a lot of difficulties especially in many provinces.”

In this spirit, Ambassador Atsushi attended a handover ceremony later that week in Battambang, where Japan’s Ehime Prefecture donated ambulances, tractors and a fire truck to its sister province.

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