Selected Comments Samdech Moha Bovor Thipadei Hun Manet, at the official inauguration of the Techo Sen Hospital Koh Thom, Kandal Province [Unofficial Translation]



(1) Air and water transportation and health – three achievements of Kandal Province

(Deputy Prime Minister) His Excellency Sun Chanthol made a presentation on January 7, 2022, almost 2 years ago (of how the hospital would look like) […] I first thought that the it was just a normal district referral doctor […] upon my arrived, my impression is that the hospital is really big. This means that as long as the CPP provides an opportunity to serve the people, the CPP-led government will build achievements in accordance with what it has promised […] in the last two days, I went down to places where the great historical achievements have been (put in place) in Kandal province (such as the Techo Takhmao International Airport – TIA) for the people of Kandal but also for the whole country […] and in the near future, there will be another big waterway achievement, the Funan Techo Canal project that is going to connect the fresh water area through Koh Thom district (to the coastal area). Therefore, these 3 projects, TIA – air transport, waterway and health sector (are the achievement built for the benefits the people of Kandal province) […]

(2) Further historic achievements for people all over the country

As long as the people continue to support and give the CPP the opportunity to serve, we will strive to bring further new historic achievements to the people across the country. People need modern technology and fast solutions. We need to put in place policies that are not just on paper, but must work hard to transform them into real achievements […] we have met and set out responsible policies to provide (public service) to the local level. Over the years, we have established numerous health posts, health centers, district referral hospitals. We created large quantities (and) need to (think about) increasing the quality, (whereby) the quality of people […] in our decentralization effort, we can organize first of all at the regional level to improve the quality of service to the people […]

(3) For doctors to do angel work better, they need equipment, infrastructure, medicine and training

According to the report of the Minister of Health, HE Chheang Ra, (the Techo Sen Koh Thom Hospital is able to provide healthcare service for) 600,000 people in 2024. However, in between 2025 to 2027, maybe its healthcare service can reach to million […] we must work to increase services (in healthcare) to more people […] practical rescue and operations need specialized doctors and equipment […] we need to take steps to start from the regional level because (in order to have the ability to fulfill these tasks, it is necessary) be well equipped […] I have said that physicians are doing the angel works […] saving the sicks who are at risk of death […] in order for them to do angel work better, they need to have the right equipment, infrastructure, medicine and training […]


(4) People’s health and capacity key to protect and strengthen the nation

If we talk about the nation, we are talking about the people. It is true that talking about the nation we include lands, culture, etc. but the people is the principal element. People are the ones who take care of the territory, the protectors and developers of the land, the creators of culture, the custodians of tradition. If there are no people, the land is empty. People are a big factor in making the country grow, build and take care of our nation. If we talk about people, we are talking about human capital, which contains two big factors – health and capacity. If we talk about health and capacity, we need to talk about education and health […] when it comes to health, we need to talk about service delivery capacity building […] or our doctors need training, equipment, provision of authority and support to fulfil the task […]

(5) Three directions of key measures to strengthen the health sector

We need to build and decentralize hospitals’ rights and training from national to the grassroots, and solicit participation of the private sector in the provision of healthcare and services. Among the priority policies, there are three directions in the key measures to strengthen the health sector, […] firstly, strengthen the foundation level or the district referral hospitals and health centers. Secondly, strengthen/increase the capacity of doctors at all levels, especially focusing those working at the provincial level […]; and thirdly, increase partnerships with the private and public sectors in the field of health, because public doctors cannot do all the works. We must allow them to participate […] as strengthening the health sector requires strengthening hospitals, improving the quality of medical care at all levels, from the health post level to the first health center, especially in line with the policy set out in the expansion of coverage of health services soon to become universal […]

(6) Create a safety net according to the voluntary contribution formula

We working to expand the new formula to increase coverage in health services […] so that our people can (receive adequate) treatment […] we are working to create safety net according to the voluntary contribution of Riel 16,500/month or Riel 500/day […] people with NSSF card and in health needed to have medical care can stay in the hospital for period of time no more than six months […] we are expanding this health care service to those self-employed or people with own business/trade. They can buy (this health care service) scheme […] as our goal is to cover a total of nine million people in this program or more than 50% of the 17 or 18 million population […] we have to make sure that the district referral doctors and centers are the places where people trust they can provide the services they need. As a policy, HE Chheang Ra has set out a target that the 1,200 health centers will be able to (provide services) 24 hours a day, and 7 days a week […]

(7) MoH shall ensure that the health centers have good medicines, sufficient and qualified materials

[…] I have given instruction in principle to the Ministry of Health to ensure that health centers have good medicines, not expired, and have good quality medical equipment […] at this stage, we are focusing on strengthening rather than expanding. We are expanding only where it is necessary. We need to raise funds to strengthen what is already there […] and are putting extra money to purchase the medicines that people need, such as for high blood pressure and diabetes […] we can now offer them five days or one week worth at a time. In the immediate future, we will increase the budget so as to be able to guarantee offering our people on a longer period. Those drugs are needed for forever […]

(8) Develop a new framework to allow experts to help fill the missing skills

At the health centers/hospitals, we have those leaders and medical officers. We are preparing a new type of framework to be able to open the door for local professionals who do not have a state framework (or are not in the government payroll) to work in any form, to help fill the missing skills […] we also are thinking about mobile seniority formula […] meaning that whether the person works in the state or private sector […] let us count in their seniority for her/him, so that, at their retirement age, (all of their works seniority in workplaces are added up together) […] this is a plan and strategy in strengthening the base and strengthening all sectors/skills. Many ministries and institutions are short of lawyers. They have requested for them to be included as Undersecretary of State. However, this way, we cannot take many of them in. We can take just one or two. But with this new framework box (above), we can hire more lawyers as contract officials. In the future, there will not be many full staff, but there will be many employees with flexible criteria […]

(9) Provincial Health Departments to elect the director of the health centers

The Ministry of Health gives the principles and rights to the provincial departments to elect the directors of the health centers. Previously, the commune council, the chairman of the quality management committee to select candidates of the director of health centers for the district governors […] who later pass the candidate to the province for further assessments […] we ensure consistency and standards […] the Ministry of Health does not need to make selective assessment of the director of the health centers. Leave the job to the provincial health departments. However, it must ensure that the health departments do their job thoroughly. The district health office is making a step of assessment, but there must be another step of evaluation (from the provincial level) […] being responsible in healthcare and medical services needs at least some of the skills, if not all, but have the general concept. Especially, the one who have gone through from the bottom up, should be chosen as the head of the district referral doctor should be someone with the right skill […]

(10) Cambodian doctors treat millions of local patients each year

Some people say that as they are seeing effort to strengthen the health sector, why do so many people go abroad for treatment? I would say that in terms of percentage compared to the number of people who receive treatment in the country, the number of people who go for treatment abroad is small. Our doctors treat millions of local people/patients each year. The fact that people go abroad for (medical purpose) is not strange. Canadians also go to the United States for treatments and many are seeking specialized treatment in other countries […] Korean volunteer doctors, whom I met, praised the Cambodian doctors for “good skills, but lacking modern equipment.” We also have modern, but not the latest. It is a prideful thing that we have built a specialist doctor in these 40 years. Providing services (to the target group) nine million people will be in the hands/responsibilities of the angle army, which is the pride of our health sector […] this is our effort to meet the need of the people who voted for the CPP. The policy (of the Royal Government of the People’s Party is) to serve the people, which is the health and capacity of the people […]

(11) let us save money for health centers and/or roads repairs

[…] The largest airport in Cambodia, for instance, if after the construction, we are leaving it closed, if it does not stimulate the economy, create more jobs, and benefits for people in the southwest and across the country, it is (equivalent to) useless […] a province (has brought to me an intention) to build the best construction in the country. I asked (if the intended project was of) benefits for the people? If it is only for looking good, keep the money to build roads in the villages, […] to strengthen health centers, to repair roads in the district, and to improve living standards of officials who are serving the people. That we do not have much money, we need to make sure it goes to the right place […]./.