UCL News


Addressing health inequalities in Thailand: UCL and HRH Princess Chulabhorn

22 September 2016

UCL committed to strengthening its medical research and public health collaborations in Thailand as it welcomed Her Royal Highness Professor Dr Princess Chulabhorn Mahidol for a third visit.

Memorandum of Understanding

Vice-Provost (International) Dame Nicola Brewer, Vice-Provost (Health) Professor David Lomas and Professor Claudio Stern, Vice-Dean (International) for the Faculty of Life Sciences joined HRH for a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signing ceremony.

It is hoped the MoU will strengthen collaboration between the UK and Thailand in finding solutions to pressing health challenges, focusing on medical student exchanges, public health events and developing undergraduate curriculums in the fields of medical science and public health.

Among the delegation joining the Princess on the visit were Thai Ambassador to the UK, H.E. Mr Kittipong na Ranong, and Professor Nithi Mahanonda, Director of Chulabhorn Hospital.

Improving access to medicine

Prof Lomas signed the MoU on behalf of UCL's School of Life and Medical Sciences (SLMS), with Her Royal Highness reciprocating for the Chulabhorn Research Institute (CRI) and The HRH Princess Chulabhorn College of Medical Science.

Earlier this year HRH announced plans to build a 400-bed hospital as part of the College, aiming to open up medical treatments to remote rural communities that might otherwise be unable to access these.

Its launch will coincide with celebrations for His Majesty the King of Thailand's 90th birthday in 2017.

Princess Chulabhorn previously visited UCL's School of Pharmacy and SLMS to discuss research and training needs in a range of areas.

Longstanding partnership

During the signing ceremony Dame Nicola spoke of UCL's wish to work more closely with partners in Thailand to address health challenges, underpinned by the Global Engagement Strategy.

Following the event, Prof Stern said: "Her Royal Highness is taking great steps to address health inequalities in Thailand and we were honoured to welcome her to UCL for this third visit.

"There is much potential for closer collaboration between UCL, the Chulabhorn Research Institute and The HRH Princess Chulabhorn College of Medical Science and this MoU represents our commitment to build on our longstanding partnership."

HRH Princess Chulabhorn is a Professor of Chemistry at Mahidol University. Her special research interests include the chemistry of natural products, environmental health problems of developing countries and cancer research.

There are currently nearly 200 Thai students studying at UCL.