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BDMS and OHSU collaborate to improve human health in Southeast Asia

Thailand’s largest health care network and a top U.S. research university create an alliance to develop an international hub and centers of excellence to improve health

Bangkok Dusit Medical Services is teaming with Oregon Health & Science University, Portland, Oregon, U.S.A., to improve health in both countries through shared knowledge and skills, and the creation of centers of excellence focused on key challenges. The effort will engage faculty, health professionals and students from OHSU's schools of medicine, nursing, pharmacy, dentistry and public health.

"At BDMS, we have been exploring the possibilities of aligning ourselves with a prominent academic hospital like Oregon Health & Science University, which has a recognized international reputation for clinical quality, research innovation and educational excellence," said Prasert Prasarttong-Osoth, M.D., BDMS President and Group CEO. "Our hope is, together with OHSU, to become a leader and center of excellence in occupational health in Southeast Asia and around the world."

To ensure a seamless, comprehensive program reaching as many people as possible, Mahidol University and its medical school, Siriraj Hospital, will also play an important role in the collaboration. Mahidol University will sign a separate agreement with OHSU.

The three organizations will develop comprehensive education, research and health promotion plans that will improve the quality of health care in Thailand. This collaboration will also benefit OHSU by providing opportunities for faculty and staff to innovate, educate and learn from each other while working together across differing cultures.

"For OHSU, collaboration and innovation are in our DNA. When we are willing to work with others to solve problems in the name of the public good, the opportunities are limitless. We are taking collaboration to the next level. This initiative will serve both Oregon and Thailand as a platform for education and research and cross-cultural scientific exchange," said Joe E. Robertson, M.D., M.B.A., President, Oregon Health & Science University.

On Oct. 29, OHSU and BDMS will sign a five-year memorandum of understanding that will establish the "BDMS-OHSU International Health Alliance." The agreement calls for the creation of "Centers of Excellence" built on an interprofessional approach. The first of these will focus on occupational health and informatics. OHSU is one of only four Total Worker Centers of Excellence recognized by the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. OHSU is also a leader in informatics innovation and research.

"International exchange is vital to today's health care education and research," said Jeanette Mladenovic, M.D., M.B.A., Executive Vice President and Provost, Oregon Health & Science University. "Every nation faces unique health challenges and develops a distinct knowledge base that could be successfully applied to other problems. Our plan — comprising education, research, and health promotion — incorporates international standards and develops our own talent base. And more importantly, it provides an essential opportunity for our students and faculty to be inspired by learning from other cultures."

Through these efforts, BDMS, Siriraj/Mahidol and OHSU will establish a trend for reciprocal sharing of expertise across international boundaries based on the mutual pursuit of research breakthroughs, clinical innovations and emerging technology.

"We are proud that OHSU has entrusted BDMS with their very first international collaboration center in Asia. With guidance from our U.S. collaborator, OHSU, we can quickly chart a course to achieve the highest standard of quality care to benefit not only our patients, but the country of Thailand," said Chatree Duangnet, M.D., BDMS EVP/GCOO-Med Affairs.

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