UMS Sets Up Centre For Children’s Health


Universiti Malaysia Sabah Hospital established a Child and Adolescent Mental and Physical Health (Champ) Centre.

UMS Vice Chancellor Professor Datuk Dr. Kasim Hj. Mansor said the centre provides services to children and adolescents with special needs in Sabah who have neurodevelopmental and behavioural issues.

“The characteristics of children and adolescents with special needs include autism, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), speech delays, learning difficulties and behavioural issues,” he said during the launching of the centre on Monday.

Kasim said with smart partnership and collaboration, the centre could become agent of change by building bridges of understanding, breaking stigma, and spreading awareness about children and adolescents with special needs by providing more specialised intervention and rehabilitation services systematically.

“Therefore, we should express our respect and highest appreciation to the pioneers, whether they have played a role in pioneering, establishing, building and filling the sustaining as well as those who are still struggling to create an inclusive society.

“Inclusivity is not just about acknowledging existence but also about providing equal support, opportunities, and gratitude for every individual, including those with special needs.

“In pursuing a more inclusive society, education plays a crucial role. It is important for us to create an environment where individuals with special needs can thrive, learn, and contribute meaningfully.”

“By fostering understanding and providing appropriate support, we can unlock the great potential that exists within each of these special needs groups.

“Therefore, let us help every child and youth with special needs to reach their maximum potential. Together, we are a force that can shape a world that is more empathetic and more understanding,” he said.

Meanwhile, hospital Director Professor Dr Helen Benedict Lasimbang said Champ aimed to provide a high-quality Play Therapy services.

“Play therapy is a form of psychotherapy that uses games to communicate with children.

“Unfortunately, Sabah does not yet have a therapist who is certified in Play Therapy as a Certified Play Therapist. 

The centre hopes to meet the challenge through certification sponsoring to improve the expertise of therapists and offer high-quality Play Therapy services.

“Thus, to reach the expert level and ensure the implementation of interventions according to the set standards, continuous training is required under supervision to ensure sufficient exposure to therapists,” she said.

Champ is one of the niche areas established by Hums and the centre also collaborated with the Department of Psychiatry and Psychological Health, the Department of Rehabilitation Medicine, and the Department of Paediatrics under the hospital.

From January to September of this year, the centre received visits from a total of 1,007 patients.



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