The Japanese government has agreed to extend Rs.50 crore financial assistance to the Institute of Child Health and Hospital for Children, Egmore, for constructing a nine floor new out-patients block.

“We are very much impressed at the services offered by the hospital. I am confident the fund will be released early next year, most probably in March,” said the Japanese Consul-General Kazuo Minagawa, in the presence of Health Minister M.R.K.Panneerselvam and Health Secretary V.K.Subburaj.

Strongly recommended

The amount will be released under Japanese International Co-operating Agency (JICA) which in 1998 allotted Rs.21.30 crore.

After inspecting the hospital along with Tomonori Minowa, Consul, Consulate General of Japan, Chennai and Ms. Kazumi Homma, Project Formation Advisor, JICA, Mr.Kazuo said he would strongly recommend for the financial assistance taking into account the urgent need for a building.

“So many small children from all parts of the country are being brought here for treatment. I could see the machines donated by our government earlier were still working,” he said.

More number of beds

Mr.Subburaj said the hospital was treating around 2,500 children every day and the government was providing a lot of assistance to the hospital.

“There is something special about this hospital. There are similar hospitals in the country, but it has more number of beds. Its need is increasing,” he said.

60 lakh newborn benefited

P.Murugan, Professor at the Institute, said in one decade nearly 60 lakh newborn and poor children had been benefited by the grant given by the Japanese government. About 5000 children with cardiac problems had a new lease of life after corrective cardiac surgeries.

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