Before the 1980’s the State Medical Authorities in Sabah had a long list of some 200 heart cases requiring surgical intervention. Half of these cases required urgent treatment and nearly all of them required part or full financial assistance. Facilities for cardiac surgery in Malaysia were lacking then and there was no provision for sending them for treatment overseas.
Against this backdrop, the Society for Sabah Heart Fund had its modest beginning. The Society was launched officially in August 1981 by the Yang DiPertua Negeri Sabah, Tun Haji Adnan Robert.
The Society’s first president was the former Minister of Community Services, Toh Puan Hajjah Rahimah Stephens.