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President Wickremesinghe Announces Major Healthcare Upgrades in Northern Province

May 25, Colombo (LNW): President Ranil Wickremesinghe has announced that Jaffna Hospital will soon be upgraded to a national hospital, enhancing healthcare standards in the Northern Province. Additionally, the Cabinet has approved the upgrade of Karapitiya Hospital to national status.

These announcements were made during the inauguration of the Clinical Training and Research Block at the Faculty of Medicine, University of Jaffna, on May 24th.

University Grants Commission Chairman Prof. Sampath Amaratunga highlighted the need to modernize technology in all science-based faculties in Sri Lanka, including engineering, medical, science, and agriculture faculties. He stressed that outdated technology hampers progress, noting that Sri Lankan students abroad excel due to their knowledge, not the technology they use.

In response, President Wickremesinghe instructed the Science and Technology Ministry and the Education Ministry to draft a proposal for modernizing technology in these faculties.

Significant investments have been made in the region, including Rs. 942 million for the new Clinical Training and Research Department building at Jaffna University. This facility, the first of its kind in 46 years, will accommodate 1,200 students and foster international research collaborations. It includes multiple lecture halls, clinical skills laboratories, an auditorium, and essential medical facilities like operating theatres and recovery rooms.

The new building also houses patient waiting rooms, consultation rooms, and specialized units for endoscopy, vascular surgery, and mammography, along with research laboratories and a forensic investigation unit.

President Wickremesinghe emphasized the importance of a strong healthcare system in Jaffna, ensuring equitable access to quality healthcare services across the country. He also highlighted the broader developmental needs of the region, including renewable energy, agriculture, and industrial zoning initiatives.

Efforts are underway to establish the first investment zone in Kankasanthurai, followed by industrial parks in Paranthan and Mankulam, with collaborative efforts with India to develop Trincomalee. Tourism prospects in the North are also being explored.

The President reiterated the government’s commitment to reconciliation efforts, addressing concerns about missing persons, and establishing the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC). He emphasized the importance of judicial authority in the TRC, with relevant ministers tasked with drafting legislation for parliamentary review.

The inauguration ceremony featured captivating dance performances by students from the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Jaffna. Various dignitaries, including Minister Douglas Devananda, MP Dharmalingam Siddharthan, and Northern Province Governor P.S.M. Charles, praised the President’s commitment to the development of the Northern Province.

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