Outgoing US Ambassador to Cambodia Praises Cambodia’s Health Sector

Phnom Penh , Nov. 14 – Outgoing US Ambassador to Cambodia William A. Heidt said that health sector in Cambodia is improving both in the city and rural area, speaking during a courtesy call on Mam Bun Heng, Minister of Health on 13 November 2018 at the Ministry in Phnom Penh.

“He [Ambassador] appreciates Cambodian health sector, particularly on reducing maternal and infant mortality and child mortality rates in both rural and urban areas, which are major roles of Sustainable Development Goals,” said Minister Mam Bun Heng.

Several goals of SDG 3: “Ensure healthy lives and promote wellbeing for all at all ages” are to reduce the global maternal mortality ratio to less than 70 per 100 000 live births; end preventable deaths of newborns and children under 5 years of age, with all countries aiming to reduce neonatal mortality to at least as low as 12 per 1000 live births and under-5 mortality to at least as low as 25 per 1000 live births; and end the epidemics of AIDS, tuberculosis, malaria and neglected tropical diseases and combat hepatitis, water-borne diseases and other communicable diseases by 2030.

The Minister added that the Royal Government of Cambodia has put efforts to reduce epidemics such as malaria, tuberculosis, dengue fever, and HIV/AIDS. In late May, Eamonn Murphy, director of the United Nations Program on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS), during his visit to Phnom Penh, said that Cambodia has become one of the seven countries in the world to achieve the goals of combating HIV/AIDS.

Cambodia is one of only seven countries worldwide to have already achieved the 90-90-90 targets which translates into 73% of all people living with HIV being virally suppressed (that means that their viral load it is almost undetectable and the likelihood of onward HIV transmission is minimal), according to UNAIDS Report. It highlights that Cambodia has the highest HIV treatment coverage in Asia and the Pacific.

On behalf of the Ministry of Health, Mam Bun Heng highly commended the mission of William A. Heidt, who has contributed significantly to socio-economic development in Cambodia. Minister also informed that during Heidt’s mandate, Cambodia-US relationship has been strengthened through trade, agriculture, health and other sectors.