We are a medical organization working in remote Cambodia where the most difficult hurdles to child survival remain. We work towards every child having the opportunity to reach his or her potential.

All the early warning signs were there. A new strain of the dengue virus in Cambodia had emerged in early 2019 and in January and February there was a slight rise in cases.  Therefore, Chenla Children’s Healthcare began to prepare for an epidemic by expanding staffing, procuring supplies and reinforcing training. When the truly big rise in cases hit in May,  space and funding were our largest challenges during the outbreak not human capacity. By utilizing every inch of space in our 600 square meter building and keeping costs exceedingly low by leveraging our public-private partnership model with the Cambodian Ministry of Health ($180 per dengue patient including ICU cases), we have been able to save many lives with our limited funding. To date, Chenla has treated over 820 dengue fever cases this year, including cases with hemorrhagic and shock symptoms. During this difficult period, Chenla of course continues to care for many other children with other common illnesses such as malaria, pneumonia, sepsis, premature birth and malnutrition. Our 24 bed facility has consistently expanded to 60 beds and beyond.

Our primary aim remains simple even during the current dengue epidemic – to improve the care of pediatric patients in one of the remotest regions of Cambodia regardless of their family’s ability to pay. No child is ever turned away. Every single dollar makes an impact and no funds go wasted. Our secondary aim remains to show the high impact effectiveness of a streamline public private partnership and how it can be replicated for a growing common good. Please drop us a note if you would like to become involved and please keep Chenla Children’s Healthcare in your thoughts and prayers during this difficult time.

The challenge

Access to quality and affordable medical care where it is needed most.

To this day, 1 in 12 children in eastern Cambodia dies before his or her 5th birthday most often from preventable or treatable causes. This rate is far higher than other parts of Cambodia (Cambodia Demographic and Health Survey 2014). They die because of extreme poverty combined with the lack of a quality medical system. They don’t have to die.

Every dollar raised for Chenla Children’s Healthcare is spent on the ground in Kratie Cambodia to provide life saving services. Targeted funding has been obtained for the minimal accounting costs occurring in the United States. Donor dollars are catalyzed by Chenla Children’s Healthcare participation in the government health care system thereby producing sustainable change with appropriate buy in by the Cambodian nascent system.

With your assistance, more lives can be saved.

How we got here

From Harvard to Siem Reap to Kratie, Eastern Cambodia.

After 7 years of hard work and successfully handing over Angkor Hospital for Children to Cambodian leadership we, Drs Bill & Lori Housworth, decided to pack up and move our family from Siem Reap to Kratie in eastern Cambodia. We founded Chenla Children’s Healthcare and are taking our extensive experience and applying it to a region where the greatest healthcare challenges remain.

The Chenla team is majority Cambodian with many years of experience in pediatric healthcare development. While we, Bill and Lori, carry 10 years work experience in Cambodia, American Board of Pediatrics certifications and public health training from Harvard, the entire team has the invaluable practical skills and knowledge needed to serve the children in eastern Cambodia exceedingly well.

The opportunity

Improve and strengthen the public sector's role.

We have a tremendous opportunity to save lives and to strengthen the public sector’s role in providing high quality pediatric health services in eastern Cambodia.

What Chenla is doing:

  • Providing direct patient services to children affected by poverty and disease in a newly renovated pediatric ward and clinic, that includes neonatal care and a social work
    department to assess and assist with social determinants of health
  • Providing a combination of healthcare outreach and health education to surrounding rural districts targeting the most poverty stricken areas
  • Improving standards of medical care through training and capacity building of local staff
  • Establishing a stabilisation, transport and referral centre to coordinate care for children when higher level services, such as intensive care, cancer treatment, or heart surgery are needed.

Chenla works alongside the local government and operates as a part of the provincial hospital rather than as a parallel structure, thus ensuring long term sustainability.

The limiting factor.

Securing enough funding to scale the program.

The key to the success of Chenla is the ability to scale the program to its appropriate size. This means hiring talented clinical and teaching staff, acquiring medicines and medical supplies, and providing outreach activities.

Overtime it is aimed for the program to become sustainable within
Cambodia itself with a growing portion of costs paid through the
government system and patient fees. Until that time a lot of work needs to be done.

We rely on partners for contributions and support. Will you help us fight child mortality in Eastern Cambodia?

Chenla Children’s Health 12-31-17 Issued Financial Statements

Chenla Info Library.