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The University Teaching Hospital (UTH) targets to conduct 50 Open Heart surgeries this year.

UTH Director of Clinical Care and Diagnostics services Alex Makupe says the institution is aiming at improving the level of medical practice and care of patients.

Dr Makupe said Zambian surgeons have been conducting open heart surgery on patients this week, with the technical support of a team from Japan.

He said going forward, the local medical teams at the hospital will be able to conduct the surgeries on their own.

Dr Makupe said the overall objective is to equip the UTH with enough expertise to conduct major operations, while the first level hospitals will deal with minor ones.