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Rex Wong
 
 
About 20 years ago, Rex Wong visited Egypt for the first time after graduated from Yale University. He didn’t know anything about Egyptian health care, but he was intrigued by the country’s history and culture. Rex worked as director of hospital strengthening for the GHLI’s Egypt program, Rex has been a resident of Egypt since April 2010 and says it’s been, “A dream come true.” Since then Rex has been working in different developing countries around the world, at the moment, he is working as faculty in Centre Hospitalier Universitaire de Kigali (CHUK) in Rwanda, Africa.






Last Christmas, I returned to Egypt for a short trip. I summited Mt. Sinai on Christmas day. It was indeed a special place to be – whether it is for religious, spiritual, or simply scenery reason, to welcome the closure of one year and the approaching of the next; while absorbing the beauty of what nature can offer. It was physically challenging, not in terms of the hike but the weather. It would have been a lot nicer if it was not that bitterly cold.

Returning to Egypt was challenging emotionally too. Egypt is enduring a prolonged battle since the downfall of Hosni Mubarak to the current protest against Mohamed Morsi. For almost two years, the country was anything but stable. Leaving Egypt when the country was in turmoil was hard; and every time I went back, it was difficult for me to see the once well manicured Tahrir Square filled with vast amount of rubbles, stench of tear gas, burnt buildings and make-shift signs with various protesting slogans... 
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Our work in Ethiopia continued to expand. One major event was the launching of the first hospital alliance in Ethiopia in April. The formation of the alliance, essentially, was to create a forum for all hospitals to share information and support each other to achieve better patient satisfaction. After months of painstaking preparation, nearly nothing turned out as planned; yet I couldn’t say I was surprise.... 
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 ... There are so many layers to the poor health care delivery. True, there is a shortage of manpower; also true the management system, or the lack of it, is inefficient. Physicians didn’t show up to work, nurses left patients unattended, medications were not available, patients were not fed over weekends, the list can go on and on. But the general widespread of apathy is the real huge hurdle to good patient care... 
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