University of Central Asia Welcomes Launch of Aga Khan Health Services Medical and Diagnostic Centre in Naryn, Kyrgyz Republic

Date: 17 May 2016
The University of Central Asia (UCA), together with the Aga Khan Health Services (AKHS), celebrated a milestone in the development of Naryn, Kyrgyz Republic into a vibrant university town with the inauguration of the AKHS Medical and Diagnostic Centre on 11 May 2016. 

UCA will welcome its inaugural cohort of undergraduate students at the Naryn campus in September. The AKHS Medical and Diagnostic Centre is a central component to AKDN’s investments in the mountain community, which include the construction of the Naryn Smart Park and faculty and visitor accommodations to provide the necessary infrastructure for UCA’s opening.

The Centre, operating under a licence issued by the Ministry of Health of Kyrgyzstan, is staffed with highly qualified doctors and other medical professionals. It will offer reliable and affordable services in gynaecology, obstetrics, cardiology, family medicine, paediatrics including a well-stocked pharmacy for Naryn residents, UCA students and faculty. With generous support of the Government of Canada and the AKDN, the Centre will also offer full laboratory services including biochemistry, pathology and haematology tests.

The opening ceremony was attended by Amanbay Kayipov, Governor of Naryn Oblast; Rahat Adiev, Mayor of Naryn; Kuban Kundashev, Advisor to the Minister of Health of Kyrgyzstan and hosted by Shamsh Kassim-Lakha, UCA Executive Board Chairman and AKDN Diplomatic Representative in the Kyrgyz Republic and Dr Fatima Ali, Regional Chief Executive Officer, AKHS. 

“This not-for-profit medical institution is a part of the AKDN’s commitment to establishing a vibrant university town in Naryn oblast by creating opportunities and improved quality of life. The Medical and Diagnostic Centre, like the University, will break down barriers and expand access to high quality services for Naryn residents and the region at large,” said Kassim-Lakha,

In his remarks, Governor Kayipov noted the swift response to Naryn’s need for quality health care services in the oblast. According to national statistics, the population of Naryn oblast faces higher than average rates of child and infant mortality, among other health concerns.

“We appreciate the timely establishment of this Centre, which we first raised with His Highness the Aga Khan when he visited Naryn less than 18 months ago. We are grateful for his acceptance of our request and delighted that within such a short span we are inaugurating a facility where the people of Naryn can access quality health care services some of which were previously unavailable in the Oblast,” said Governor Kayipov.
 
UCA’s SPCE also recognised 23 graduates of its innovative English for Health (EHP) programme at the launch of the Medical and Diagnostic Centre. The six-level programme teaches health professionals communication skills in specific health-related areas, improving their medical vocabulary in English and building the skills to communicate patient health issues fluently.

“Two years ago I could not say a word in English. I am delighted that today at this special occasion I am delivering my speech in English. My colleagues and I at the Family Medicine and Diagnostic Centre look forward to serving the people of Naryn in close collaboration with local medical institutions,” said Dr Anara Berdikozhoeva, Director of MDC and SPCE graduate. 

“We are delighted that this Centre, equipped with a modern laboratory and innovative technologies that will provide exemplary health care services to residents of Naryn without regard to their faith, origin and gender,” said Kundashev, Advisor to the Minister of Health of Kyrgyzstan Minister of Health of Kyrgyzstan.

Referrals from the MDC to the Naryn Oblast Hospital will link the Centre to a broader public health system. In 2015, the Aga Khan Foundation initiated an eHealth service for three government-owned health care facilities in Kyrgyzstan; the Republican Children’s Clinical Hospital now provides live teleconsultations to patients at the Naryn Oblast Hospital and broadcasts eLearning courses in Child Health and Family Medicine to health care professionals at the Naryn Oblast Family Medicine Centre.

UCA is building three campuses of equal facilities and stature in Naryn, Kyrgyzstan (2016), Khorog, Tajikistan (2017), and Tekeli, Kazakhstan (anticipated 2019). Each UCA campus features state of the art classrooms, libraries, and laboratories, secure, modular dormitories and athletic facilities open to the public, including football pitches and tennis courts.