MADERA, CA —  – Valley Children’s Healthcare and Wigmore Women’s & Children’s Hospital are proud to announce a formal partnership aimed at elevating pediatric healthcare in Yerevan, Armenia. A signing ceremony took place Thursday, Nov. 2, 2023, at Valley Children’s, signifying a commitment to transformative change in the healthcare landscape of Armenia.

Earlier this year, physicians from Wigmore Women’s & Children’s Hospital spent several weeks at Valley Children’s, where they learned from – and collaborated with – pediatric specialists in Madera. Following the success of this exchange, both healthcare networks engaged in discussions to establish a formal long-term partnership.

“We are grateful to the team at Wigmore Women’s & Children’s Hospital for reaching out to Valley Children’s and working together to establish this relationship,” says Valley Children’s President & CEO Todd Suntrapak. “It is a tribute to the shared values of our organizations, to the quality of care we deliver here and the chance to share our experiences with them, and, in large measure, to the deep Armenian heritage of our Valley and of our many patients, families, staff and community members who have made such an impact on our organization for more than 70 years.”

“We celebrate the start of this valuable partnership with Valley Children’s, a leading healthcare institution in the United States that aligns with our vision and core values focusing on delivering comprehensive, accessible and high-quality healthcare to children,” says Dr. Zaven Koloyan, CEO of Wigmore Women’s & Children’s Hospital. “Working hand in hand with our colleagues from Valley Children’s healthcare, Wigmore’s mission is to transform pediatric healthcare in the country by setting international standards of quality and care. It is through the partnership with such a leading institution as Valley Children’s that such systemic change becomes possible.”

This historic partnership promotes continuous learning and professional development of physicians and other care teams in Armenia. Wigmore providers will learn from Valley Children’s teams in areas ranging from general pediatrics to pediatric subspecialties, including surgery, critical care, neurosurgery and emergency medicine.

Other plans include:
-Nursing education and training
-Development of quality improvement initiatives and patient safety protocols
-Exploring opportunities for the implementation of residency programs and collaborative research endeavors

In the future, Valley Children’s team members will also travel to Wigmore for continued education in key pediatric specialties, nursing and patient safety.

“This goes further than Valley Children’s helping to strengthen the quality of care Wigmore provides,” adds Suntrapak. “In return, this partnership will provide opportunities for our medical residents and physicians to travel to Armenia and deliver care in communities very different than our own U.S. experiences and return with new knowledge and skills they would not gain anywhere else.”

Three Wigmore providers – Maxillofacial Surgeon Dr. Anahit Shahainan, Head of Pediatrics Dr. Aida Papikyan and Pediatric Radiologist Dr. Lilit Petrosyan – began their two-week rotation at Valley Children’s earlier this week. They are the hospital’s second group of doctors to travel from Yerevan to Madera.

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