• This visionary transformational gift will support the SingHealth Duke-NUS Academic Medical Centre in creating an ecosystem that drives innovation and research to provide even more effective and holistic person-centred care.

• Two other transformational gifts totaling $14 million in support of neuroscience were also presented at the SingHealth Duke-NUS Gala Dinner 2023.

SINGAPORE, 28 January 2023 – SingHealth, with its academic medicine partner Duke-NUS Medical School, held its biennial signature fundraising gala today.

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Finance, Mr Lawrence Wong was the Gala’s Guest of Honour. The event, which returned after a hiatus of more than three years due to the COVID-19 pandemic, was attended by 650 guests comprising donors, clinicians, researchers, educators and healthcare professionals.

Its theme, ‘A New Dawn’, signifies the AMC’s emergence from the pandemic with a renewed sense of purpose to transform and deliver care that is more patient-centred, value-driven and efficacious.

Advancing healthcare innovation and research

At the event, the SingHealth Duke-NUS AMC announced a transformational gift of $50 million from the Lee Foundation that will support the advancement of innovation and research through programmes and initiatives in the AMC Health Discovery District – an ecosystem of innovation centres connecting each SingHealth campus, including the upcoming Eastern General Hospital. The Academic Medicine Innovation Institute, that was established in 2021, will oversee the fostering of a vibrant innovation culture in the ecosystem.

“Healthcare transformation has been the buzzword as health systems focus intensely on finding new ways to bring care that is more patient-centred, value-based and efficacious to enhance patient experience, clinical outcomes and to promote population health. This generous gift will galvanise a paradigm shift in care delivery, by creating dynamic innovative hubs to develop novel diagnostic, therapeutic and prognostic modalities, leverage new technologies, including digitalisation and artificial intelligence, with the overall goal of improving the lives of our patients and to benefit our society,” said Professor Ivy Ng, Group Chief Executive Officer, SingHealth.

The Lee Foundation’s gift will boost the AMC’s efforts to design and strengthen frameworks to hasten advancements in healthcare innovation, seed the potential for discovery and innovation through funding and pilot grants, and push the boundaries of medicine through novel research programmes.

“We believe that what we invest in healthcare innovation today will have a longstanding impact on the health and well-being of generations of Singaporeans to come. We are excited to partner the SingHealth Duke-NUS AMC to enable doctors, nurses and allied health professionals to pursue healthcare transformation through innovation. We hope that our gift will inspire ideation, accelerate discoveries and fuel cutting-edge advancements in healthcare processes, medical technologies and therapies to make a difference and give hope to patients and their loved ones,” said the Board of Directors for the Lee Foundation. This transformational gift was made in memory of Mrs Alice Lee, wife of Lee Foundation founder Lee Kong Chian.

Strengthening support for patients with neurological conditions

At the Gala, DPM Wong also witnessed two other transformational gift presentations in support of neuroscience.

With the global concern of an ageing population, the World Health Organisation (WHO) has predicted that by 2040, neurodegenerative diseases such as dementia and Parkinson’s disease will overtake cancer to become the second leading cause of death after cardiovascular disease. Many neurological diseases do not have cures currently; these two gifts are especially timely as the AMC focuses efforts into tackling age-related diseases and chronic conditions prevalent in our communities to engender a healthier Singapore.

Mr Cheng Wai Keung, Chairman, SingHealth, presented a $9 million gift in support of the “Ecosystem of Dementia Care” programme at the National Neuroscience Institute (NNI). A total of 30 donors contributed towards this gift. To be launched in April 2023, this three-year programme aims to deliver vital life-transforming services and provide compassionate support across the continuum of care for dementia patients, their caregivers and families, ranging from community care and screening to rehabilitation and intervention.

As part of the programme, NNI plans to scale up its pilot programmes with community partners for dementia rehabilitation and intervention with the aim of moving these programmes towards mainstream clinical service, to allow more patients to receive holistic care.

The G.K. Goh family presented a $5 million gift, made in honour of Mr Goh Geok Khim, Founder and Executive Chairman of G.K. Goh Holdings, who is also Chairman Emeritus of the international executive board of Temasek Foundation International and a member of the board of Temasek Foundation Ltd. The gift will establish a proposed centre for neuroscience research that will enable scientists from Duke-NUS, National Neuroscience Institute and the wider AMC to investigate the mechanisms behind the ageing of the human brain as well as those underpinning degenerative disorders, with the aim of developing effective new therapeutics and strategies to slow the ageing process and treat debilitating neurological illnesses.

“The human brain continues to astound scientists with its complexity and beauty. This impactful gift will enable our scientists to pursue new insights about how we can slow the impacts of ageing on the brain. Such new knowledge will enable us—and our partners—to deliver innovative bench-to-bedside interventions that improve quality of life for longer, thereby creating new opportunities for people to enjoy life and remain actively engaged in their communities,” said Professor Thomas Coffman, Dean of Duke-NUS Medical School.

The SingHealth Duke-NUS Gala Dinner is organised in support of research and education causes at the SingHealth Duke-NUS Academic Medical Centre (AMC).