Project HOPE Launches Rehabilitation Program to Address Needs of Thousands Recovering from Injuries Sustained During the May 12, 2008 Earthquake

70,000 people injured during the earthquake require long-term specialized care to properly heal

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John P. Howe, III, MD., President and CEO of Project HOPE visited China's Sichuan Province immediately following the earthquake to begin planning for HOPE's long-term relief efforts focusing on rehabilitative services for children.

This program is an excellent example of HOPE's commitment to provide long-term help following disaster situations, and at the same time, it helps those impacted build capacity to make their own health care systems stronger for the future.

Millwood, VA and Beijing, China (Vocus) May 12, 2009

On the one-year anniversary of the massive earthquake that devastated China's Sichuan Province, Project HOPE , an international health education and humanitarian assistance organization, is officially launching the China Rehabilitation Medicine Program. The three-year program is collaboration between Project HOPE and China's Ministry of Health, with support from several of Project HOPE's corporate and foundation partners.

The purpose of the program is to increase both the accessibility and quality of rehabilitation services in the earthquake-affected areas of the Sichuan Province, as well as contribute to the improvement of rehabilitation services throughout China.

"Project HOPE is proud to launch this comprehensive rehabilitation program in cooperation with the Chinese government which will not only help those who need the care immediately, but will serve as a platform to improve overall rehabilitative care throughout China," said John P. Howe, III, M.D., President and CEO of Project HOPE. "This program is an excellent example of HOPE's commitment to provide long-term help following disaster situations, and at the same time, it helps those impacted build capacity to make their own health care systems stronger for the future."

Project HOPE has been working in China for more than 25 years. Immediately following the massive, May 12, 2008 earthquake, several Project HOPE trained medical professionals in China were dispatched to the earthquake zone to help survivors. Project HOPE's staff in China continued to work closely with in-country corporate offices, the Ministry of Health, the Sichuan Bureau of Health and local hospitals in the quake region to determine the medical needs and deliver over $1 million of medicines and supplies donated by HOPE's corporate partners and foundations. The China Rehabilitation Medicine Program is an extension of Project HOPE's long-term recovery efforts aimed at addressing the needs of the more than 70,000 injured, many of them children that require long-term, specialized rehabilitative care to properly heal from their earthquake related injuries.

Over the next three years, the China Rehabilitation Medicine Program will:

1.    Broaden the scope and availability of community rehabilitation services in providing holistic rehabilitation services, including physical and occupational therapies and psychological support for earthquake affected children and adults, in selected communities in Dujiangyan city, an area significantly impacted by the earthquake.
2.    Improve the capabilities of rehabilitation services in a selected city-level hospital to better support community-based rehabilitation services in Dujiangyan city.
3.    Strengthen the rehabilitation service capacities at a selected provincial level hospital, which serves as the rehabilitation technical and training resource center in Sichuan Province.
4.    Standardize national rehabilitation training curricula and rehabilitation services guidelines for community and city-level rehabilitation services;
5.    Create a supportive environment for scaling up a community-based rehabilitation service model and institutionalizing the rehabilitation service guidelines in the country.

Corporate Partners and Foundations supporting the program include:

Abbott Fund
Avon Foundation for Women
Baxter International Foundation
Bristol-Myers Squibb Foundation
C. J. Huang Foundation
Eli Lilly & Company
Hanger Orthopedic Group, Inc.
Hospira
Johnson & Johnson
Medtronic Foundation
OuYang Yu Foundation
Vincent V.C. Woo Memorial Foundation
Wyeth

About Project HOPE
Founded in 1958, Project HOPE (Health Opportunities for People Everywhere) is dedicated to providing lasting solutions to health problems with the mission of helping people to help themselves. Identifiable to many by the SS HOPE, the world's first peacetime hospital ship, Project HOPE now provides medical training and health education, as well as conducts humanitarian assistance programs in more than 35 countries. For more information, please visit http://www.projecthope.org.

CONTACTS:

Project HOPE
Marisol Euceda
301-347-3922

Rand Walton
540-837-9469

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