Last Wednesday, September 18, 2019, Dr. Marie (former chairman of Philippine Pediatric Behavioral and Developmental Disability Association) and two other Filipino doctors arrived in Pyongyang, DPRK for a series of lectures and training in Developmental and Behavioral Disabilities.
Dr. Marie is providing expert training in screening and treatment for children with developmental disabilities such as autism, cerebral palsy, and ADHD. The other two doctors include an Orthopedic Surgeon and a Pediatrician. Both will add to Dr. Marie’s training by providing a multi-disciplinary and holistic approach to treating pediatric patients and providing medical care for children with developmental disabilities.
This initiative started about four years ago when IGNIS Community took a delegation of four North Korean doctors to Manila, Philippines. It was the first exposure to a multi-disciplinary approach to treating children with developmental disabilities for the North Korean doctors. The medical system in Manila gave us a glimpse of what it could look like if North Korean children received early intervention and screening for developmental disabilities, were referred to appropriate specialists, were treated with timely medical care, and received social services to help them integrate into society.
But most importantly, an MOU was signed between the Pyongyang Medical School and the Philippine National Medical School of Manila at this trip. This opened up the opportunity for North Korean doctors to come to the Philippines for further study and professional development in Pediatric specialties, Rehabilitation Medicine, and even Prosthetics and Orthotics.
This partnership has led to this day, when three Filipino doctors are able to visit Pyongyang and provide life-saving medical training for North Korean doctors. This training could potentially save the lives of thousands of children with cerebral palsy, autism, and other developmental disabilities in the DPRK - transforming communities for a better place.