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President Ranil Wickremesinghe has directed financial assistance from the President’s Fund for liver transplant surgeries for young children at the Ragama Teaching Hospital and cochlear implant surgeries at the Sri Jayawardenepura General Hospital. This decision aims to alleviate the financial burden on impoverished parents and support the welfare of children, recognizing their importance for the nation’s future.

Acknowledging the substantial costs associated with pre and post-tests and treatments for liver transplant surgeries in children under 16 years old at the North Colombo General Hospital (Ragama Teaching Hospital), President Wickremesinghe has approved Rs. 1 million from the President’s Fund for each liver transplant surgery meeting common conditions. This financial support will be effective from January 1, 2024, aiming to ease the financial strain on families undergoing these critical medical procedures.

President Wickremesinghe’s directive underscores the government’s commitment to providing essential medical care for children in need, particularly those facing life-threatening conditions requiring specialized surgeries. By utilizing the President’s Fund to support these surgeries, the government aims to ensure that financial constraints do not hinder access to vital healthcare services for young patients, thereby safeguarding their health and future well-being.

Medical tests have revealed that over 200 children in Sri Lanka require cochlear implant surgery, a procedure crucial for their auditory development. While in developed countries, such surgeries are promptly performed at birth upon identification of the need, in Sri Lanka, not all eligible children undergo this procedure. It’s emphasized by medical experts that such operations should ideally occur within two years from birth for optimal brain development, yet the cost is a significant barrier, estimated at over Rs 5 million. Currently, this surgery is limited to a few government hospitals, leading to waiting lists for affected children.

The cochlear implant surgery is conducted at the Sri Jayawardenepura General Hospital, with the implant device valued at approximately Rs. 3-4 million. Although the Ministry of Health provides the device to the hospital free of charge, patients are required to cover the surgery costs, which amount to Rs. 600,000. This financial burden underscores the need for additional support mechanisms to ensure access to essential healthcare services for children in need of cochlear implant surgery. To address this issue, the Ministry of Health has sourced the necessary cochlear implant devices, while the surgery costs, amounting to Rs. 600,000, will be covered by the President’s Fund. Consequently, the government will fully shoulder the expenses associated with these surgeries, which are conducted at the Sri Jayawardenepura General Hospital.

The decision to forgo cochlear implant surgeries for these children not only impacts society negatively but also strains the healthcare system. Despite the considerable financial investment required for such procedures, it must be recognized that providing financial aid from the President’s Fund for these surgeries on young children is an investment in the nation’s future. Consequently, President Ranil Wickremesinghe has authorized financial assistance from the President’s Fund, effective January 1, 2024, with a maximum amount of Rs. 600,000 for cochlear transplant surgeries conducted on children at the Sri Jayawardenepura General Hospital.

With the instruction of His Excellency the President and the guidance of the Secretary to the President, President’s Fund has initiated the above scholarship program to identify and brighten the future of the Children living in all provinces of Sri Lanka who are capable of learning, but are in financial difficulties. Accordingly, this scholarship program is used to provide a helping hand to improve their future life by providing relief to some extent and not to stop their learning activities in the middle due to financial difficulties until they obtain their higher education opportunities.

In line with that and because of the special requests received from the students, His Excellency the President has decided to increase the existing monthly allowance of Rs.5,000.00 (10 installments have been paid so far ) from February 2024 for the scholarship awardees of the President’s Fund. Accordingly, we are pleased to inform you that a monthly allowance of Rs. 6,000.00 will be paid on the first week of each month to the students of the President’s Fund scholarship program for the year 2021/2022 from February 2024 until they sit for the G.C.E A/L examination.

Highlights of the Pirith Chanting Sermon held by the President’s Fund to mark the inauguration of the New Year 2024

SMS Alerts service has been enabled for the convenience of patients who have submitted applications to the President’s Fund.

In order to expedite payments for the applications submitted by you for obtaining medical assistance from the President’s Fund, the relevant application form has been amended and therefore, you are kindly informed that only the requests made through this new application form will be accepted with effect from 20.03.2023. Click here to download new application form

The deadline of submitting applications to the schools for scholarships offered by the President’s Fund for Advanced Level students has been set for December 22. The President’s Fund urges all eligible students to submit their applications on or before December 22, as the validity period is not anticipated to be further extended.

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