Better Hearts Better Cities, Ulaanbaatar
“A healthy mind has a healthy body and a healthy heart”
Name: Doctor Namkhaidorj
Profession: Interventional cardiologist
Namkhaidorj is one of Mongolia’s most experienced cardiologists. He has worked abroad in China and South Korea and has practiced medicine in Mongolia for 7 years. He says “with Mongolia’s tiny population, doctors must be versatile. There are lots of problems – problems associated with low income, stress, diabetes and hypertension. We have modernized so much in the past 100 years and lead sedentary lifestyles in the city. Very cold weather restricts outdoor exercise and obesity is on the rise. We only used to consume meat in the winter and salted tea in the summer but now with refrigeration, we can eat meat all year round and have salt, salt and more salt in our diets.” Leading telemedicine services, Namkhaidorj reviews patients thousands of kilometres away helping to deal with the rising tide of cardiovascular disease in Mongolia. Namkhaidorj says “people live day by day, we need a change in perspective. Smoking, particularly among young ladies needs to stop. We need capacity building and education. Mongolians are unique both ethnically and genetically. We need to do more research to find out who we are, what is wrong, what works and then get on with fixing it.” Namkhaidorj shares a Mongolian proverb: “healthy man has got a healthy mind” and then adapts it himself adding “a healthy mind has a healthy body and healthy heart.” – Dr. Alex Kumar
Dr. Alexander Kumar is a British doctor and photojournalist whose areas of special interest are expedition medicine, global health and infectious and tropical diseases. Alex has worked in over 70 countries and recently visited Mongolia as part of the Better Hearts Better Cities initiative.