Fourteen people will benefit from the 2011 heart surgery programme at King Faisal Hospital, Kigali (KFH,K). The programme, which started on Saturday, will target adult patients.
A team of volunteers, comprising 42 Doctors and Allied health professionals from Boston, USA (Team Heart Inc.) and a local Rwandan team of surgeons, anaesthetists, cardiologists, physiotherapists, pharmacists and nurses will conduct the process.
The joint teams will operate on 14 adults of 40 years with rheumatic heart disease between February 5 and 12.
Dr. Joseph Mucumbitsi, the Paediatric Cardiologist and coordinator of the program at (KFH,K). said that about 221 Rwandans have so far benefited from the cardiac surgery and catheterization program.
“We have, so far, had three challenging cases that we are happy to have handled successfully since last Saturday,” Dr Mucumbitsi said.
According to Dr. Mucumbitsi, Team Heart is planning to operate on two patients per day over a period 7 days.
The National Cardiac Surgery Program started in April 2006 in partnership with the Ministry of Health and four visiting surgical teams: “Team Heart Inc.” from Boston and “Healing Hearts Northwest” from Spokane, Washington, USA, “Operation Open Heart” from Sydney, Australia and “Chain of Hope”, from Brussels, Belgium.
This international partnership program was built with the aim of developing an autonomous Cardiac Centre of Excellence for children and adults, offering new opportunities to Rwandans every year to access highly specialized cardiac care.
The program will also respond to local and regional heart surgery needs.