CROWN PRINCESS KATHERINE FOUNDATION OPENS FIRST
OPERATING UNIT FOR CONGENITAL HEART DISEASE
Belgrade, 9 December, 2008 – The Crown Princess Katherine
Foundation officially opened the first operating unit for Congenital Heart
Disease at University Children’s Hospital in Tirsova.
This important project was initiated by Prof. Dr.
Afksendios Kalangos, Head of Cardiovascular surgery at the University
Hospital in Geneva and a great friend of Princess Katherine, in cooperation
with the Institute of Cardiovascular Diseases of the Clinical Centre of
Serbia and University Children’s Clinic in Tirsova.
This will be a unique department in our country, in which
both children and adults with congenital heart disease will be operated.
Due to the fact that Their Royal Highnesses Crown Prince
Alexander and Crown Princess Katherine attended the funeral of His Holiness
the Patriarch Alexei II of Moscow and All Russia in Moscow, they were not
able to be present at the opening. Their Royal Highnesses were represented
at the opening by Mrs. Alison Andrews, daughter of Princess Katherine. On
behalf of Princess Katherine, a letter was read by Prof. Dr. Ida Jovanovic,
Director of Paediatric Department at University Children’s Hospital. In the
letter the Crown Princess emphasized: “I would like to thank everyone
involved in this important project and to point out that I am very pleased
that all parties involved recognize the importance of this endeavor.
Serbia will now have its first operating Unit for
Congenital Heart Disease for children and adults will give patients new hope
and better conditions for recovery, and doctors a new challenge, as well as
a the possibility to develop their knowledge and practical skills in dealing
with this heart condition”. As a part of the opening ceremony speeches were
delivered by HE Prof. Dr. Tomica Milosavljevic, Minister of Health of
Serbia, Prof. Dr. Afksendios Kalango, head of Cardio-surgery at the
University Hospital in Geneva, Doc. Dr. Milan Djukic, Director of University
Children’s Hospital and Dr. Slobodan Ilic, Head of Cardio surgery at
University Children’s Hospital.
This project was conceived with the generous help from
friends of Their Royal Highnesses Crown Prince Alexander and Crown Princess
Katherine, Mr. Alexander Niklan and the Foundation of Prof. Dr. Kalangos
“Hearts for All”, as well as from the Republic Fund for Health Insurance. A
part of the intensive care unit and day hospital were reconstructed, built
and equipped with the most modern beds and medical equipment for
post-operative treatment of congenital heart disease. Prof. Dr. Afksendios
Kalangos, who apart from little Dejana has saved more than 15 young lives in
Serbia, and for his contribution received a prestigious award from RTV
Studio B, „Belgrader of the Year“. During this visit, he will once again
operate, this time on two children and two adults with congenital heart