Remarks by Ambassador Daniel L. Foote at the Neurology Training Program Launch

Remarks by Ambassador Daniel L. Foote
Neurology Training Program Launch
University Teaching Hospital Main Lecture Theater, Lusaka, Zambia
October 11, 2018

Dr. Trevor Kaile, Dean of the University of Zambia’s School of Medicine
Dr. Clarence Hiluba, University Teaching Hospital Senior Medical Superintendent
Dr. Deanna Saylor, Johns Hopkins University
Dr. Omar Siddiqi, Harvard Medical School
Ladies and Gentlemen
All other protocols observed

On behalf of the U.S. government, I am delighted to demonstrate my nation’s concrete commitment to improved health and education in Zambia.  Thanks to the support of the J. William Fulbright Program and the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the Neurology Master’s of Medicine/Specialist Training Program is a reality.  Today’s launch shows great promise for a stronger and healthier Zambia.

Historically, the Fulbright Program has helped strengthen U.S. relationships with countries around the world, including Zambia.  This international educational exchange provides participants with the opportunity to study, teach and conduct research, exchange ideas, and contribute to finding solutions to shared international concerns.  NIH, the U.S. government’s medical research agency, focuses on making medical discoveries to improve health and save lives.  Fulbright scholarships and NIH grants are extremely competitive, so I must extend my sincerest congratulations to everyone who has brought this prestigious opportunity to Zambia.

I also want to congratulate everyone who diligently worked to create this moment that will directly improve the welfare of Zambians.  Currently, there are no trained Zambian neurologists in this country.  The launch of this training program will change that—with plans to graduate five Zambian neurologists in the first two years alone.  The work of these neurologists will improve care for stroke survivors, patients with epilepsy, HIV-associated neurological illnesses, and many other conditions.  This program will also enhance the local research capacity by developing the first generation of physician neuroscientists.

As the largest donor to Zambia’s health sector, and the largest bilateral donor overall, the American people are excited about the unlimited possibilities in the advancement of health, science, and education in Zambia.  I challenge the first cohort of trainees to work hard in laying the groundwork for a promising program in the years to come.  Finally, I encourage continued collaboration between U.S. and Zambian universities for the benefit of healthier lives.

Thank you.