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Wednesday, June 16 • 6:30pm - 8:30pm
Reducing Neonatal Deaths: Proven Solutions from Southeast Asia

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This event will showcase the East Meets West Foundation's work in significantly reducing neonatal mortality and morbidity in Southeast Asia through customized, clinical solutions. The statistics are sobering: 99 percent of all newborn deaths occur in the developing world, almost two-thirds of infant deaths occur in the first month of life, and every year 4 million newborns die worldwide from easily treatable diseases. Yet newborn care is the branch of medicine with the least investment, research and innovation. Attempts to provide solutions often fail, because the interventions are not appropriate to the local conditions where they are implemented. The East Meets West Foundation has been tackling this issue in Vietnam for the past four years through its Breath of Life program, with outstanding results. Breath of Life provides key neonatal medical equipment to hospitals and integrates those technologies into the medical system by training medical personnel and working with the local health authorities to increase the capacity for newborn care. The equipment is locally engineered and manufactured in Vietnam, making it low cost. The program's flagship piece of technology, the Continuous Positive Air Pressure (CPAP) machine, treats respiratory distress, the most common ailment in newborns. A standard treatment in the developed world, CPAP was virtually nonexistent in Vietnam five years ago. When it was introduced in EMW's pilot program at the National Hospital of Pediatrics in Hanoi, 24-hour infant mortality rates dropped by 70 percent. The program is also providing a complementary array of neonatal equipment to tackle other causes of infant mortality and morbidity, including LED-equipped phototherapy machines to treat jaundice, infant warmers, and infection-control alcohol gel. Today, neonatal equipment provided by Breath of Life is operating in more than 140 hospitals in Vietnam, primarily at the national and provincial level. With simple, clinical interventions, Breath of Life has saved the lives of tens of thousands of babies, providing a replicable model of neonatal care that EMW is now implementing in Laos, Cambodia and East Timor. Come learn about this innovative program at our Global Health Council event. The event will include a short presentation on the program and a panel discussion with program staff who are directly working with the hospitals in Southeast Asia and our program advisors from Oakland Children's Research Hospital and Harvard Medical School who have overseen the program since inception in Vietnam, providing expertise and best practices to our partners in Southeast Asia.


Wednesday June 16, 2010 6:30pm - 8:30pm EDT
Executive Room

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