AmeriCares, through a long standing partnership with one of the country’s leading hospitals, the Sihanouk Hospital Center of Hope (SHCH), has played a critical role in improving health care access and medical outcomes for thousands of poor patients every year. Key programs have targeted HIV/AIDS, breast cancer and malnutrition. Nutritional support, particularly for children under five, is a continuing focus of aid.
Snapshot of Cambodia:
Cambodia still struggles against the brutal legacy of Pol Pot’s genocidal rule in the 1970s. The “Killing Fields” slaughter of 1.7 million people by the Khmer Rouge targeted anyone with an education. By the time Pol Pot was removed from power in 1979, only an estimated 10 to 50 doctors remained in the entire country. The country’s health care system was decimated along with the economy. Poverty and lack of health care access present formidable challenges. Critical health issues:
- high risk of communicable disease including diarrheal disease, Hepatitis C, typhoid, dengue fever and malaria
- a large number of adults and children in Cambodia do not have consistent and reliable sources for good nutrition with 29% of children below the age of five underweight.
- limited capacity for treatment of chronic disease.
View images of our work in Cambodia
Since 1996, AmeriCares has delivered over $165 million worth of aid to Cambodia with a significant portion supporting the work of our leading local partner, SHCH.
In order to provide free care to more than 90,000 impoverished patients each year, SHCH relies on regular shipments of medicine and hospital supplies from AmeriCares to help stretch limited resources. It is now the busiest adult hospital in the country and has provided more than a million outpatient consultations for patients in the capital city of Phnom Penh and outlying areas.
HOPE worldwide, the hospital's parent organization, honored AmeriCares with their "Partner of the Year" award in 2007.
In 2011, AmeriCares responded with disaster relief for people affected by severe flooding. For the communities included in SHCH’s home-based care program, through support from AmeriCares emergency grant, this meant 600 home visitations to 172 families in 4 surrounding districts of Phnom Penh.
AmeriCares responded to both record floods from 1999-2001, and the long periods of drought that followed. In this time, AmeriCares deepened its commitment to Cambodia and built upon the already strong foundation with SHCH; a partnership that continues continues to thrive today.
AmeriCares work in Cambodia began in response to deadly floods that ravaged six provinces along the Mekong River in 1996. We sent medical and humanitarian aid to help the more than 1.3 million people affected by Cambodia's worst flooding in 3 decades. Homes and crops were destroyed and half of the affected population required emergency aid and disaster relief.
In partnership with AstraZeneca and AmeriCares, HOPE launched the Sihanouk Hospital Breast Cancer Initiative. The program is successfully increasing the number of breast cancer patients receiving treatment; developing clinical human resources in the field of breast cancer diagnosis and care; and raising public awareness about the disease. Read More »
In response to high rates of HIV/AIDS, AmeriCares supports SHCH's home-based and community care programs with donations of medicines, infection control supplies and nutritional supplements. AmeriCares also helped to launch a Mobile Health Clinic, providing primary care to residents of Phnom Penh squatter communities, support services for many others infected with the disease, along with education and consultation to prevent the transmission of HIV. Read More »
AmeriCares delivers Meal Packs donated by XanGo to help reduce risks associated with malnutrition. These meal packs contain essential nutrients needed for a healthy diet and are used as a nutritional supplement for both children and adults. Read More »
We support volunteer medical teams who visit the country to provide key medical and humanitarian services to poor communities with little or no access to health care. Since 1996, products valued at over $3 million have been donated to the Medical Outreach Program in Cambodia.
Recent News from Cambodia
Ros is one of many breast cancer patients in Cambodia and other developing countries who receives medical support from AmeriCares. In 2011, AmeriCares delivered $1.2 million worth of breast cancer medicines to women in need all over the world.
In fall, 2011, as the worst flooding in half a century left millions of people in Southeast Asia struggling to survive, AmeriCares responded to urgent requests for aid, with emergency grants to partners in Vietnam and Cambodia for the purchase and distribution of food and relief items to help thousands of survivors in dire need.
Thanks to a hepatitis treatment program supported by AmeriCares and product donations from Merck, 100 low-income patients now receive the lifesaving care they need.
AmeriCares Breast Cancer Program at the Sihanouk Hospital Center of HOPE in Cambodia is expanding – to treat more patients, train more doctors and nurses, and build local capacity.
AmeriCares and AstraZeneca’s Cambodia Breast Cancer Initiative promotes early detection and treatment to help save women’s lives.
AmeriCares and AstraZeneca are expanding breast cancer early detection and treatment in Cambodia in hopes of increasing survival rates. Read more.
AmeriCares relief worker Kat Rady was recently in the slums outside Phnom Penh where AmeriCares supports Sihanouk Hospital Center of HOPE's home-based care program for HIV and AIDS patients as well as a mobile clinic that treats many AIDS patients.
AmeriCares honors Heart Month and delivered $170 million worth of lifesaving heart medicines and medical supplies to help stem this worldwide heart disease health crisis last year. In recognition of Heart Month, AmeriCares is sharing heart patient success stories from around the world.
Hundreds of people wait patiently in the outdoor waiting area of Cambodia's Sihanouk Hospital. Each is hopeful that today his or her name will be pulled from the lottery. Residents from all over the country travel to Phnom Penh because they can not afford health care and the Sihanouk Hospital Center of Hope (SHCH) offers free medical attention.
A diagnosis of breast cancer is scary for any woman. But imagine being a woman in Cambodia, where the number of physicians is estimated at a dismal 16 for every 100,000 citizens, and where the cost of even basic medication is beyond the reach of most people.