Dutch health technology firm Royal Philips has signed a seven-year agreement to build Ethiopia’s first specialised cardiac hospital with the governments of Ethiopia and the Netherlands.
The first project of its kind for Philips, the €40m agreement announced sees it delivering a complete hospital for diagnosis and treatment of cardiac diseases to address a critical shortage in Ethiopia.
Ethiopia’s new health minister said the facility, and the transfer of expertise, would transform cardiac treatment in the country, where thousands are on waiting lists for treatment of preventable diseases.
Scheduled for completion in mid-2020, the 7-storey, 7,200-m2 building will have three operating rooms, two catheterisation labs, 94 beds, and full diagnostic and examination suites, Philips said.
Called the Cardiac Care Center, it will be built at the existing Tikur Anbessa Specialized Hospital (TASH) in Addis Ababa.
Philips is responsible for the full turnkey design, construction, equipping and commissioning, as well as staff education and equipment maintenance for five years after completion.
Ethiopia’s more-than 100 million citizens currently have no access to a continually functioning cardiac centre, and suffer disproportionately from rheumatic heart disease, which is often caused by non-treated throat infections – a leading cause of acquired heart disease among children and young adults in the country.
Tikur Anbessa hospital has a waiting list of over 8,000 patients for cardiac care.
Under the agreement Philips will also renovate an existing floor of the TASH hospital, starting next month, to bolster its cardiac care capabilities before the new hospital is built.
The plan is to have a dedicated cardiology operating theatre and intensive care unit there by the end of the year.
Ethiopia’s new health minister Dr. Ato Amir Aman (30) said the agreement would help transform cardiology care in Ethiopia.
The government of the Netherlands is helping to fund the project, which includes a specialist cardiology training program with the University of Cape Town to develop the Ethiopian surgical team