Adult Complex Cardiology & Cardiac Surgery

 Yangon, MYANMAR

 Pinlon Hospital

MAY 7 – 15, 2017

CardioStart announces a return mission to Yangon, Myanmar, during May 2017.  The mission will focus on adult cardiac surgery at PinLon Hospital.


Myanmar, which has a population of 55 million, was under military rule and essentially closed to outside influence until 2011 when President Li Thein Sein was elected and major changes toward democracy were instituted.

Since 2011, Myanmar has welcomed tourists and new trade.  While westernization and modernization are progressing rapidly, there are many aspects of this beautiful country that retain the untouched qualities of the world before mechanization.

Myanmar is a predominately Buddhist country and agrarian, using animal power for tiling the land, weaving on hand looms, and fishing from dugout teak boats.  It has a beautifully diverse culture, and its natural resources are rich in gold, gems and natural beauty.

Yangon is the largest city in Myanmar, with a population of about 7 million, on the southeast edge of the Irrawaddy Delta, in a tropical climate zone. The December to March period is dry and hot, with temperatures averaging 90 – 100 degrees F.

Cardiac Surgery Status in Myanmar

Myanmar cardiac services are currently limited.  Four hospitals do cardiac surgery in Yangon.  There is a public hospital, Yangon General (YGH), which does fewer than 200 adult cases per year; Yankin performs about 60 cases of basic ASDs and PDAs each year; the Defense Services Hospital (DSGH) run by the military, (250 adult cases per year;) and PinLon Hospital, a new private hospital just starting its program.  CardioStart has been advised that to ensure assistance to the poor in the community at this stage in the development of cardiac services.


The PinLon Hospital will be the location chosen to receive the early growth and development of services and personnel training.  The cardiac surgical team at PinLon is headed by Dr. Tin Maung Aye.  Dr. Tin is requesting assistance at PinLon with advanced adult cardiac surgical techniques, nursing, biomedical engineering and respiratory therapy.

The hospital’s cardiac team, includes three qualified surgeons and four in training.  There are two cardiologists at a Siemens Cath Lab, who have just started doing primary PCI at the military hospital.  PinLon has a seven bed CVICU and a medical ICU with ten beds, which supports liver and kidney transplants.  A cardiac surgical team from Open Heart International, based in Australia, has been going to Myanmar for the past ten years to assist with both pediatric and adult cases.

The Mission: Adult Cardiac Surgery

MyanmarCardioStart’s role in this mission will be to offer:

1) Priority assistance to help increase the number and skills of cardiac surgical teams in Myanmar. During the week, we will take on complex adult cases including re-operations, late-presenting congenital heart disease, and valve repair techniques. While local medical and surgical teams are advanced in their knowledge of adult CABG and valve replacement operations, and basic ASD and PDA repairs, policies in the past have limited financial capability to expand and provide available healthcare services.  The mission affords new opportunities for training, servicing, and acquisition of equipment.

2) Advanced anesthetic and perfusion techniques.

3) Intensive care nursing education and development of protocols and algorithms of care.

4) Biomedical engineering assistance with both old and new equipment. (This is critical; there are no biomedical engineers available).

5) All volunteers should assume they will be required to help with bedside teaching, daily lectures, and advanced techniques in all relevant areas.  The teams will be divided

The Team

  • CardioStart Mission Director will select the team with adult expertise:
  • One Adult Cardiologist
  • 1 Adult Anesthesiologist
  • Two Cardiac Surgeons (Filled)
  • One Echo Tech
  • Two Perfusionists
  • Four Cardiovascular ICU Nurses
  • One Respiratory Therapist (filled)
  • One OR Scrub Nurses
  • One data base research coordinators (filled)
  • One experienced Biomedical Engineers


The outreach program will be limited to a day or two of cardiac assessment in an outlying clinic.

Mission Travel Details

Team selections will be made based on team needs and professional experience. Mostly, selections will be made on a first come, first served basis.  CardioStart tries to balance each team with returning volunteers and those joining a mission for the first time.

Travel and airfare:  Airfare costs will be self-funded by each volunteer. WE RECOMMEND YOU DO NOT PURCHASE A TICKET UNTIL YOU ARE ACCEPTED ON THE TEAM BY WRITTEN CONFIRMATION. This confirmation will be provided after you have met all the required paperwork submission.

A visa (business-type) is required to enter and work in Myanmar.  You can do this by either:

  1. Applying through the Embassy of the Union of Myanmar in Washington, D.C. (For those leaving from the USA, the fee is US $50 by money order, and requires application forms with two passport photos to be sent to the Embassy with your passport). OR
  2. Applying for an Evisa. You can do so using this website:

Lodging: Lodging will be either provided by our hosts or by CardioStart in comfortable accommodation in central Yangon for those not on call.  On-site housing will be available for on-call personnel.  Same sex room-sharing will be encouraged to reduce expenses for our hosts.

Meals: Breakfast will be provided by the hotel; lunch is provided at the hospital.  Evening meals are the responsibility of the volunteers and we encourage you to go together in groups to enjoy the local cuisine.

Touring: CardioStart mission leaders cannot directly help you make internal tourist travel arrangements.  Tours and tour packages are available through hotels. Popular tourist sites include Yangon itself, Bagan, Mandalay, and Inle Lake.

Personal Health:  The city of Yangon is relatively safe and clean. It is however, in tropical Southeast Asia where risks of malaria, hepatitis, tuberculosis, and typhoid exist.  Japanese Encephalitis vaccine is recommended if your trip lasts longer than one month depending on where you visit in Myanmar. The CDC website is a good place to look for up to date information and of course, visiting a Travel Health specialist for any trip like this, is necessary.

Applying for CardioStart’s Mission To Yangon, Myanmar: Please visit our Volunteer Interest Form, and upload your CV/resume. Correspondence and applications should be directed through the Tampa, FL USA office. Upon being accepted to the team you will be immediately notified and then receive additional correspondence from CardioStart via email with information on how to proceed in submitting necessary paperwork and documentation.

You will be part of a great historical medical development and we very much look forward to welcoming you to the team!

Contact recommendations:

Preliminary information, please contact CardioStart Head Office:

Tel: 813-304-2163; Fax: 813 304 2165