Selected Comments Samdech Moha Bovor Thipadei Hun Manet, inaugural speech of the Techo Santepheap National Hospital [Selected unofficial translation]


(1) Do not leave any person without access to healthcare

[…] According to the report of HE Chheang Ra, Minister of Health, the Techo Santepheap National Hospital (TSNH) is the largest hospital in Cambodia with nearly 10,000 beds and equipped with international standard equipment […] today’s achievements will contribute to strengthening the quality and scope of health services as well as the Royal Government’s attention to public health and welfare in line with the slogan “leaving no one without access to health care” […]

Why did we build such a big hospital at this stage? Samdech Techo has affirmed already his vision for this place to be the basis for solving health problems both immediate and strategic […] when the Covid-19 erupted in the community, when people started to worry, the Royal Government exercise care to protect and to save the lives of people who are sick and affected […] and to prevent the pandemic from spreading to others, including within the hospitals […]

We were forced to set up temporary locations […] everywhere in the world, they set up primary hospitals to prevent the pandemic from spreading […] we need more voluntary doctors […] it is based on (these necessities that) we built and equipped (this Techo Santepheap National Hospital). As Covid-19 is gone, what is the necessity to prepare such (a hospital)? […] even if Covid-19 or an infectious disease is unlikely to happen in another 100 years […] or if it happens even 1%, we must (have the means and the infrastructure to) protect the lives of the people because people’s lives must come first […]

(2) TSNH provides multidisciplinary services and eventual preparedness

The organization of the TSNH is strategic, solves problems and provides multidisciplinary services to the people […] we have talked about the need for subways, but the people’s need is not only infrastructure and roads. The most important need is health. This lifestyle and health are requirements. Thus, the establishment of this large-scale hospital is a long-term strategy for solving the problems of (population) growth and pandemic diseases […] we had met already the pandemic challenges in 2020 and 2021 […]

[…] (Such large hospital) here helps relieve the burden of other hospitals in Phnom Penh […] this is a visionary arrangement of Samdech Akka Moha Sena Padei Techo Hun Sen […] some say why build such a big hospital? […] (this is an arrangement) is a long-term strategy based on the experiences we have already had […] we (have this hospital as a) reserve for the eventual (infectious disease) event. If there is no (infectious disease,) eventually we will use it to treat (diseases) according to the needs of the people […]

(3) Health ensures productivity and ability to be able to learn, gain experience …

Human resources are an important factor for the nation. Human resource is the factor that enables the nation to develop sustainably, and the main factor for each person to acquire ability and health. However, even with ability and opportunities, but if health is not possible, what can we possibly do […] health is a determining factor. Health guarantees productivity, ensures people’s ability to be able to go out and study, to go to work […]

Today, we launch the first priority policy program of the Royal Government of the seventh legislature of the National Assembly, which is to provide global health coverage […] as our nation grows, we must ensure equitable development, which means to share the (fruit of economic development equitably) […] the benefit of equitable development is to give priority and help to the people who need help […] so that they can be strong and move upward with their life and advance […]

At the moment, (Minister of Health) HE Chheang Ra has shared with you the background of the equity fund, which we started piloting in 2000 in some provinces to test the efficiency and consistency. We will continue to expand until 2015, until we will extend coverage to many health centers and referral clinics. Between 2018 and 2022, more than 14 million people are supported by the equity fund and use this healthcare service […] in short, they have equity card or poverty card. This means that the social benefit has reached the people […]

(4) Effective policies are based on realities, reflecting circumstances, possibilities, visions and experiences

We do not just write policies […] each policy of the Royal Government is not a snatch, and not the results provided by Google […] each policy reflects the responsibility of the Royal Government. I have stated that a well-written policy but in applicable and ineffective is not a good policy. An effective policy is a policy that is applicable on the ground, based on the realities of Cambodia, confirming the country’s situation, our possibilities, our vision and our experience […]

The proclamation of the Royal Government’s first priority program to provide global health coverage comes from the collection of ideas of practitioners in all institutions, especially experts in the Ministry of Health, […] we have two sub-programs that we announced today. The first is to expand the scope of the health equity fund to vulnerable families […] the second sub-program is the social security system for voluntary healthcare through a contribution system for more than three million members of the social welfare fund. This sub-program I will post later […]

(5) Although the resources are limited, the Royal Government will serve the living needs and well-being of the people

I want our people to have more children. We (have) a population of only 17 million […] we are able to opt for (increase). In urban areas, the birth rate is still low […] we have a policy that takes into account the health of pregnant women and children up to two years old […]

[…] The Royal Government will use its resources to the best of its ability to serve the living needs and well-being of its people. The official announcement of the expansion of the Health Equity Fund to vulnerable families, as well as the inauguration of the Techo Santepheap National Hospital, are real examples of this reality. In the future, I believe that all Cambodians will receive good health care […] I wish you all good health, but if you need healthcare services, please come and use (the medical services provided by the hospital) here […] this hospital is built for you […] for all people to benefit […]

(6) A comprehensive plan, implementation measures and mechanisms with capacity and efficiency

TSNH is a hospital that plays an important role in helping the health of the people, and especially the effective implementation of the policies that we set out here in the healthcare program towards (realizing global) health coverage. (To ensure that) these works will score successful achievements, there needs (to have) three jobs. First, there must be a comprehensive plan, second, there must be clear implementation measures, and third, there must be a competent and effective implementation mechanism […]

To ensure effective implementation, the Royal Government must set out a number of key measures to strengthen the implementation of the Pentagonal Strategy Policy, as well as the first policy program in the health sector, which is to strengthen the foundation of executive personnel […] which means to strengthen the health centers at the grassroots, the referral health centers and integration with provincial hospitals. In Phnom Penh, the private healthcare providers are encouraged. We are modernizing and bettering equipment to strengthen the health center […]

The key rule of the health sector that we must promote in this term is to strengthen the capacity to provide primary health care at the health centers, referral hospitals through (the fulfillment of) three tasks – first, the deployment of appropriate, ethical and properly trained staff […] second, the adequate supply, according to our resource, of medicines, equipment, tools […] (in this sense, we) must review and re-evaluate the distribution of quality drugs to target patients. We must check drugs that are no longer needed and we can them out of stockage and expand the amount of medicine that people need more […] and third is to improve the infrastructure, encourage the use of IT and digital health where possible […]

(7) The private sector and the state are partners, not enemies

We are to build strong partnerships between public and private health sectors to achieve quality, safe and effective health care services for all sectors. Of course, the state has provided policies to support the health of the people, but does not mean that the state plays a role in providing services for the people in all policies […] in the field of health as well as other sectors, I would like to see the partnership between the state and the private sector strengthened in accordance with the slogan “together, we think, we act, and take responsibility” […] the private sector plays a very important role in expanding the scope of treatment and capacity for the people, especially those in urban areas. We have private clinics, consultation rooms, both foreign-invested doctors and partners to participate in Phnom Penh […]

(8) Food and medicine safety is very important

Food safety and medicine safety is very important. No one is a supplier alone. The supplier is also the consumer […] the state must do its part to find partnerships and increase the responsibility of the private sector for him to participate in the implementation of various committees and associations […]

For food and drug safety, I am asking the relevant institutions, including the Ministry of Interior, the Ministry of Commerce, the Ministry of Health, the General Department of Customs and Excise, to review and evaluate the existing mechanisms. So that the policy or mechanism to be effective, we must (work) together, and do not carry out works separately to ensure effectiveness […]

I would like to see the private sector and the people in the associations play a role in informing, guiding, orienting, facilitating the implementation, helping to strengthen each other, helping each other step by step, making self-improvement […] regarding the people’s health and the process whereby we together are the winners. While the sellers of the product wins, the consumer and the state also win […]./.