Former NBA Star Still Gives Back

By BASN Wire Services
Updated: August 29, 2009

Dikembe Mutombo

Dikembe Mutombo

KINSHASA, DRC — The Biamba Marie Mutombo Hospital and Research Center in Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of the Congo and BD (Becton, Dickinson and Company) has launched two Centers of Excellence — an Immune System Monitoring Laboratory and an Occupational Safety Centre for Health Workers — at the state of the art medical facility founded by NBA legend Dikembe Mutombo.

The safety center will train more than 300 clinicians, and the new laboratory will improve monitoring and treatment of patients living with HIV/AIDS.

Mutombo was joined at the opening ceremonies by UNICEF Executive Director Ann M. Veneman, BD Executive Vice President Gary Cohen and the DRC Minister of Public Health, Mwami Mopipi Mukulumany.

The Center is an expansion of the BMMH, an acute care hospital which opened in 2007 and provides care to thousands of patients each year in a region of the world where over five million people have died from violence, hunger and disease since 1998.

“The doctors and nurses at the Biamba Marie Mutombo Hospital are saving lives every day and helping improve health care in the DRC which has been ravaged by more than a decade of war and disease,” Mutombo said.

“These Centers of Excellence are an important milestone in improving the quality of life for those who live with HIV/AIDS and in training new health care workers to help prevent the spread of disease.”

The new Centers will provide laboratory equipment, reagents and training to improve immune system monitoring, an essential component of treating people living with HIV/AIDS.

To help ensure the safety of healthcare workers at the facility, DMF will develop a Department of Occupational Health and a Regional Training Center at the BMMH. BD, in collaboration with the University of Virginia, will help implement the Exposure Prevention Information Network (EPINet) surveillance system to monitor occupational injuries at BMMH.

BD will also provide a range of safety-engineered injection and safety-engineered blood collection devices as well as laboratory and occupational safety training for at least 330 healthcare workers.