State Counsellor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi attended a ceremony yesterday to reopen the newly renovated Daw Khin Kyi Women’s Hospital in Bahan Township, named after her mother and located near her childhood home.

The hospital upgrades were donated jointly by the Embassy of the People’s Republic of China in Myanmar and China Foundation for Peace and Development.

In her speech yesterday, she highlighted the importance of the all-encompassing compassion of nurses as a requirement for the unity of national races.

“This hospital is not only important for our health, but is important for our union and our nurses. I felt much gratitude toward the people who made the hospital in my mother’s name, Daw Khin Kyi (Women’s) Hospital, into a successful and developed hospital that will serve the people. I personally value these things,” said Daw Aung San Suu Kyi.

The hospital brought back childhood memories for the State Counsellor, who experienced the compassionate nature of nurses when they occasionally visited her home.

Her mother, wife of Bogyoke Aung San, was also a nurse.

“Though the ethnic women nurses came from different areas of the country, they loved each other and were united. I’ve seen none who were not compassionate. I respect the nurses and value them. In the same way, I came to understand the Union Spirit from them. There was no discrimination on where they came from. They don’t treat one patient differently from another,” she said.

The State Counsellor also underlined the health and education sectors which Myanmar needs for development.

“When I say a person is not educated, I don’t mean not having a degree. I mean not having rational thought. This is depending on the surrounding. It is not depending on whether you attended school or not. To have rationalization is to treat others correctly. It was an education for me to see the young nurses who came from all over the country living together in friendship and unity,” she said.

She also encouraged the nurses in attendance yesterday, as they play an important role in country’s health care.

 “When I was young, I thought nurses were more important than doctors. I still have the same thought now. This is because the nurses are the one who are giving personal treatment and encouragement to the patients,” she added.

The good care provided with compassion and good will by present-day nurses can help those who can serve the country regain strength to contribute toward the country, she said. As part of yesterday’s ceremony, the Chinese Ambassador’s wife Mrs. Wang Xue Hong delivered a message of greeting and then transferred documents related to Daw Khin Kyi Women Hospital, a Myanmar-China friendship hospital, which were accepted by Union Minister for Health and Sports Dr. Myint Htwe.

Mrs. Wang Xue Hong also presented a certificate of honour to U Chaung, the honorary chairman of the Central Organization for Myanmar-China Cooperative Relations.

This was followed by Union Minister for Health and Sports Dr. Myint Htwe presenting documents of honour to Chinese Ambassador to Myanmar Mr. Hong Liang and the chairman of the China Foundation for Peace and Development, who donated the upgrading of the Daw Khin Kyi Women’s Hospital and provided hospital equipment. The Embassy of the People’s Republic of China in Myanmar acting Charge d’affaires accepted the certificate of honour on behalf of the Chinese Ambassador to Myanmar.

Yangon Region Chief Minister U Phyo Min Then also presented certificates of honour to Central Organization for Myanmar-China Cooperative Relations senior chairman U Thitsa, who facilitated the quick renovation of the hospital. Documents of honour were also presented to the director of Art Wave Group Co., who conducted the renovations and construction of the hospital, and Chief Engineer of China Sinoharm International Corporation, a company that imported hospital equipment and provided medical training. Next, the State Counsellor, Union Minister Dr. Myint Htwe and the Chinese Ambassador’s wife Mrs. Wang Xue Hong cut a ceremonial ribbon to open the hospital,

Daw Aung San Suu Kyi and Mrs. Wang Xue Hong unveiled the statue of Daw Khin Kyi in the hospital.

The foundation of the hospital hall that later became Daw Khin Kyi Women’s Hospital was laid in 22 August, 1933 and opened on 1 September, 1933. Stewardship of the hospital was transferred to a Women and Child Care organization on 15 September 1947 and was renamed Tower Lane Hospital. It was used as a hospital to deliver children.

The hospital was governed by the 13-member board chaired by Daw Khin Kyi and transferred to the social welfare department in 1949. In 1953, the hospital came under the control of Ministry of Health.

 With the Daw Khin Kyi Women’s Hospital upgraded to high standards, the pressure on Central Women’s Hospital and other hospitals in Yangon will be reduced, officials said. Additionally, arrangements are underway to train skilled midwives who will provide basic health care throughout the country.

The total cost of upgrading and renovating Daw Khin Kyi Women’s Hospital and provisioning it with medical instruments and equipment was US$2 million.