October 5, 2017 Pompton Plains, New Jersey -- SolHEALTH Executive Director David Rutstein addressed the residents of the Cedar Crest Retirement Community. Dr. Rutstein described SolHEALTH's mission of customized population-based health promotion and disease prevention with an emphasis on the challenges and successes of the SolHEALTH project in Shenzhen, China and the anticipated start of the project in The Gambia. After the presentation there was a robust question and answer session during which participants drew comparisons with current domestic and international public health and healthcare policies. Later, Dr. Rutstein and Mrs. Gayle Rutstein had the opportunity to have lunch with Community residents while further discussing a variety of public health topics.
April 9, 2017 Serrekunda, The Gambia -- SolHEALTH met with The Gambia Red Cross Society (GRCS) in Serrekunda to discuss the coming week's activities in the country. SolHEALTH was invited to The Gambia to assess the GRCS Health Promotion and Disease Prevention plan and to assist the GRCS in clarifying their request to SolHEALTH for assistance in the plan's nation-wide implementation.
March 25, 2017 Beijing, China -- SolHEALTH hosted a dinner in Beijing for individuals and institutions to learn about its work. The event was held in the rooftop greenhouse banquet room of Orient Landscape, generously provided by the QiaoNv Family Foundation Executive Director, He Lan. The guests were addressed by David Rutstein, SolHEALTH's Executive Director, as well as by William Liu, one of SolHEALTH's Board members.
April 13, 2017 Banjul, The Gambia -- Gambia's Minister of Health, the Honorable Saffie Lowe Ceesay welcomed SolHEALTH's Executive Director, Dr. David Rutstein and the International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies' Health Coordinator for West & Central Africa Dr. Aissa Fall. The meeting, held in Minister Ceesay's office immediately before she attended the new national government's first cabinet meeting, was to learn of the potential collaboration between SolHEALTH and the Gambia Red Cross Society in implementing a unique health promotion and disease prevention campaign to benefit the country's population.
March 10, 2017 Monterey, California, USA -- SolHEALTH Executive Director David Rutstein, delivered a plenary talk and presentation to approximately 150 attendees of the Natividad Family Medicine Reunion in Monterey, California. The talk entitled, 'Promoting Health and Preventing Disease, One Population at a Time', was very well received, generated thoughtful questions and a lively discussion. Dr. Rutstein was featured in the Hospital's Press Release regarding the event.
Luohu Hospital Group President Sun Xizhuo (center)
March 28, 2017 Shenzhen, China -- SolHEALTH's Executive Director David Rutstein met with WU Yudong, Chancellor of Peking University's Shenzhen Graduate School, to discuss forming an institutional partnership. Such a partnership are vital to the success and sustainability of the Health Promotion and Disease Prevention project in Shenzhen.
March 31, 2017 Shenzhen, China -- The Shenzhen Health and Family Planning Commission's Director General, Luo Lexuan received SolHEALTH's Executive Director, David Rutstein to discuss the Director General's priorities for the Health Promotion and Disease Prevention project in Shenzhen. Like his colleagues, Director General LUO conveyed his enthusiastic support for project.
April 10, 2018 SolHEALTH, The Gambia Red Cross Society (www.redcross.gm), a highly respected, experienced organization with over 20,000 volunteers in The Gambia, and the UB-ONE Foundation, a German non-profit organization (www.ub-one.com) are collaborating on a health promotion and disease prevention project entitled Healthcare Support and Strengthening in the Gambia (HSSG). The five-year project will develop, implement and oversee primary and secondary prevention strategies and activities designed to support and strengthen the health of the Gambian people. It aims to employ evidence-based strategies to establish a balance between health and healthcare, create a culture of health promotion, reduce healthcare related expenditures, and build sustainable, affordable and effective healthcare and public health infrastructure. The HSSG Project has three areas of focus: (1) Revitalizing and improving Gambia’s primary healthcare system, (2) Improving sanitation and personal hygiene, and (3) Improving access to safe water.
The HSSG project will support training of new community health nurses and incentivizing existing and new ones to work in underserved locations; preventing influenza, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, maternal sepsis, post-partum hemorrhage and pre-eclampsia; screening for depression; improving the disposal of human excreta; conducting a personal hygiene campaign; conducting a clean water educational campaign, and; deploying clean water technologies in the most critical villages.
At the Minister of Health’s request, the project will begin in the most remote two regions of the country — the Upper River Region and the Central River Region — and continue over successive phases until the entire country is served. After receiving encouragement and endorsements from The Gambia’s Minister of Health, the Ministry of Finance, UNICEF, WHO and the EU, among others, SolHEALTH, UB-ONE and the Gambia Red Cross Society have begun raising the $7.4 million needed for the first two-year phase. Implementation of the project will begin January 2019.
Front Row (L to R): Amy Guan, Madame Song, William Liu, Hanna Han, Nassrin Afnan, Taotao Anwar, Rachel Friedman, Qin Xinyan, He Lan. Back Row (L to R): Spencer Li, Masoud Afnan, Evan Rutstein, Husayn Anwar, David Rutstein, Josh Kurtzig.
April 11, 2017 West Coast Region, The Gambia -- SolHEALTH's Executive Director, David Rutstein traveled with Red Cross Society officials to The Gambia's West Coast Region visiting village health clinics, district health centers and hospitals to meet and interview health administrators, physicians and nurses. The purpose of the trip was to learn from front-line personnel their assessment of the most critical health needs facing their nation, and to see a representative sample of the nation's healthcare infrastructure.
April 5, 2017 Baltimore, Maryland, USA -- SolHEALTH Executive Director, David Rutstein addressed two classes at Baltimore Friends School's Public Health Day. Speaking about public health in general and the role of health promotion and disease prevention in particular, Dr. Rutstein found the students to be engaged and inquisitive. In addition, Dr. Rutstein had the opportunity to have lunch with some of the faculty and exchange views with a wide array of students and other public health professionals who were also making presentations during the day's events. Congratulations to Baltimore Friends School for focusing on public health!
March 29, 2017 Shenzhen, China -- SolHEALTH met with Deputy Health Director SUN Meihua and senior department heads of the Shenzhen Health Bureau to discuss priorities, logistics, identifying a local partner and laying the groundwork for the Shenzhen-SolHEALTH Health Promotion and Disease Prevention project. The Shenzhen Health Bureau officials conveyed their enthusiastic support for the recommendations and strategies delineated in SolHEALTH's Detailed Action Plan submitted in January 2017. Simple gifts were also exchanged.
March 31, 2017 Shenzhen, China -- SolHEALTH met with the Chen Shiyi, President of the Southern University of Science and Technology (SUS-TC) and his team in Shenzhen to discuss a possible partnership in implementing the Health Promotion and Disease Prevention project in Shenzhen. Also in discussion was the establishment of, and collaboration with, a new medical school on the SUS-TC campus -- a joint venture with Johns Hopkins University.
November 26, 2017 Shenzhen, China -- SolHEALTH has concluded its project in Shenzhen. After a fruitful collaboration with the Shenzhen Health and Family Planning Commission, the city-wide health promotion and disease prevention project was deemed a success. SolHEALTH’s goal has always been to develop and implement effective, population-based health promotion and disease prevention strategies that will be replicated and spread. To facilitate this, the Shenzhen Health and Family Planning Commission was able to enlist the support of various government-funded public health and healthcare delivery platforms in Shenzhen. One of these was the Luohu Hospital Group (a government-funded private hospital group possessing hospitals and clinics within Shenzhen and Guangdong Province), which was able to implement many of the SolHEALTH health promotion and disease prevention strategies. The initial evaluation data collected internally suggests the Luohu Hospital Group is making remarkable strides in primary, secondary and tertiary prevention in Shenzhen. The success of the Luohu Hospital Group has been so widely acknowledged that its president, Sun Xizhuo was invited to Beijing by the national government where his hospital group was lauded as a model for China’s health reform. Thus, it appears that SolHEALTH's effective health promotion and disease prevention strategies have been implemented, with the real potential for further spread. We are gratified that the people of Shenzhen will benefit from the success of the Luohu Hospital Group.
We have expressed our deep gratitude to the leadership of the Shenzhen Health and Family Planning Commission for their kindness, guidance and support over the last 18 months, and to the various private businesses and academic institutions that have pledged financial and logistical support to SolHEALTH (we subsequently received numerous expressions of gratitude and invitations to return to Shenzhen). We have acknowledged the innovation and apparent success of the Luohu Hospital Group and our hope that they continue to flourish. And, we have left the door open to future collaborations in Shenzhen, and elsewhere in China.
L to R: Yiting, Gu Jun, David Rutstein, Chen Shuyi, Li Xu