Sri Lanka Insurance launches ‘School Fee Protector’ – The Island

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Dr. Kithsiri Edirisinghe, co-founder and CEO of the International Institute of Health Sciences (IIHS), a pioneering healthcare training provider in Sri Lanka and a role model for the education sector, recently received international recognition for his excellence and visionary leadership in education. award, an Honorary Degree of Doctor of Health Sciences presented by the Open University of Malaysia (OUM) honors Dr. Edirisinghe for his foresight in adding value to the health profession and education. This prestigious award is also recognized by the Malaysian government.

The IIHS was launched as a new concept aimed at getting Sri Lanka to export skilled labor, reduce dollar outflow and improve foreign exchange inflow. He said that at the beginning of the institute, he had no recognition in the sector. Today, the prestigious company is regionally accepted, with a growing global reputation.

“I really appreciate OUM for recognizing me,” said Dr Edirisinghe. “Each step is important, each recognition and landmark is unique in nature. I continually strive to ensure that all achievements are made with quality.

Throughout his career, Dr. Edirisinghe’s milestones are countless. After completing his education at S. Thomas’ College, Mt Lavinia, he became a doctor by profession. Dr. Edirisinghe has a Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery (MBBS) from North Colombo Medical College followed by Master of Science and Doctor of Medicine (MD) in Medical Administration from the University of Colombo. He has over 26 years of experience in the healthcare industry and over 15 years of experience in the education industry. Dr Edirisinghe has a Certificate IV in Training and Assessment and he is also a Certified Master Trainer, Australia. His journey in the practice of medicine began as a doctor serving rural areas. With little access to scarce resources, Dr. Edirisinghe has made a difference. “I trained as a doctor, as a surgeon, I liked working with people. During my first appointment as an MBBS doctor at Mahawalathenna Hospital, Balangoda, I worked several shifts alone performing minor surgeries – there were no nurses, no ambulance or even telephone. With his clinical acumen, he was able to transform the bare minimum infirmary into a thriving rural health hospital.

Not wanting to rest on his laurels, Dr. Edirisinghe, he joined Ragama Hospital as Deputy Director of Administration. He progressed as a hospital planner and consultant and realized he had more value to add to society. He ventured into the private sector and served at a leading hospital as a project director, contributing through administrative and management roles.

He has rendered his services as a project consultant to many hospitals and health centers in Sri Lanka including Northern Central Hospital, Jaffna; Hemas Hospitals, Wattala and Galle, Kotelawala Defense Teaching Hospital, De Zoysa Maternity Hospital Special Baby Care Center, etc.

With his extensive experience, Dr. Edirising also teaches at the Institute of Postgraduate Medicine, imparting knowledge to undergraduate physicians and graduates in health care and management. Edirising, he firmly believes that his greatest achievement is “being able to create a model to include everyone in education”. In recognition as an international educator and entrepreneur, Dr. Edirisinghe received the 2009 Asian Grid Entrepreneur Award.

About the success of the IIHS, Dr. Edirisinghe said, “When I started the IIHS, only the Open University and the IIHS offered degrees in healthcare. There are now 17 players and we are very happy with the growth of the industry. Previously, in the private sector, no one wanted to be a nurse. We started the IIHS with over 20 students. Today we have grown to 3000 students. The society recognizes that the IIHS is affordable for students and some courses are even offered at 1/15 of the total cost compared to overseas fees. Our vision remains to transform people for the benefit of the community and the landscape, primarily through innovation. It is important to note that Dr. Edirisinghe is now living his dream by establishing a global center of education in South Asia named “IIHS Multiversity” for South East Asian students and healthcare professionals.

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