Clintons Visit HRH Program Faculty, Patients in Rwanda

Minister of Health of Rwanda and HMS senior lecturer in the Department of Global Health and Social Medicine Agnès Binagwaho (center), President Clinton and Chelsea Clinton visit the Centre Hospitalier Universitaire de Kigali. Image: HRH Program

On Aug. 5, the Ministry of Health of Rwanda welcomed President Clinton and Chelsea Clinton to visit the Human Resources for Health (HRH) Program. The program, which was launched by His Excellency President Paul Kagame of Rwanda and President Clinton, is celebrating the completion of its first year and the beginning of its second year.

The program operates through an innovative model to address critical gaps in the quantity and quality of health professionals in Rwanda. Each year, HRH deploys nearly 100 faculty–doctors, nurses, midwives, dentists and global health management experts –for one-year periods to “twin,” or partner, with Rwandan colleagues. Faculty mentor and support their Rwandan colleagues in the areas of curriculum development, didactic teaching, clinical teaching and management and administration.

In the first year of the program, 91 faculty from U.S. institutions, including Brigham and Women’s Hospital, partnered with 90 Rwandan colleagues across four referral hospitals, seven district hospitals and eight schools of medicine, nursing and midwifery and public health.

President Clinton and Chelsea Clinton received a tour at Centre Hospitalier Universitaire de Kigali (CHUK), one of the referral hospitals supported by the HRH program. There, they had an opportunity to witness some of the bedside clinical co-teaching that has been the mainstay of BWH. In addition, Jennifer Kreshak, MD, a BWH surgeon and instructor of Surgery at Harvard Medical School, demonstrated surgical techniques for medical students and residents along with Dr. Georges Ntakiyiruta, faculty of medicine at the National University of Rwanda.

The tour concluded with a private meeting between President Clinton and some of the faculty pairs—Rwandan faculty and their partners from U.S. institutions—who participated in the first year of the program.

Read more about HRH in this Harvard Medical School news article and in the BWH Bulletin.