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The legacies left by Chinese Medical Teams: View

Updated: 2017-02-09

In the past 54 years, the Chinese foreign-aid medical teams have not only acted to prevent and treat infectious and common diseases in the recipient countries, but have also introduced high-tech modern medical techniques such as cardiac surgery, tumor removal, and replantation of a severed limb. They have applied minimally invasive medicine and traditional Chinese medicine such as acupuncture and massage, as well as a combination of Chinese and Western medicine to the recipfmient countries. Through various ways such as clinical teaching and academic lectures, they have trained a large number of medical personnel for the recipient countries and left many legacies. With selfless dedication and superb medical technology and with an international humanitarian spirit, they have overcome difficulties and made outstanding contributions to improving health care in recipient countries and the health of the local people. Presenting the Chinese people's peace-loving and life-cherishing values, they deepened the friendship between the Chinese people and local people overseas, and contributed to human peace and development. The medical team members are praised as "Chinese Angels", "South-South Cooperation Models" and "The Most Popular People".

As the needs of recipient countries developed we continued to innovate the work of foreign-aid medical teams, explore cooperation between medical institutions, invite medical staff from recipient countries to come to China for short-term clinical training, and send short-term medical teams. Our health services have gradually shifted from purely medical assistance to a comprehensive approach that covers public health and medical care, counterpart cooperation, and education and training.

In recent years, we have conscientiously implemented our commitment to providing health aid to Africans. Besides the foreign-aid medical teams, we have provided support for the construction of the African center for disease control and prevention, established hospitals in collaboration with countries such as Ethiopia, implemented women's and children's health care demonstration projects in Zimbabwe and other countries, and carried out free cataract surgeries in countries such as Mauritania. With the above actions, we fulfilled the commitment of President Xi Jinping at the Johannesburg Summit of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation.

In recent years, we have been positively coping with the overseas public health emergencies. After the Ebola hemorrhagic fever outbreak in West Africa in 2014, our foreign-aid medical teams in Guinea, Sierra Leone and Liberia did not leave, but stayed to provide assistance. We also sent West Africa more than 1,200 clinical and public health experts, the greatest number since the founding of the PRC, which has won wide acclaim from the international community. We also dispatched medical teams to help Nepal after it suffered disastrous earthquakes. The Shanghai Public Health Emergency Response Team became one of the first international public health emergency response teams certified by the World Health Organization.

In recent years, we have taken many measures to innovate the foreign-aid medical teams. In order to attract more outstanding medical personnel to participate, we shortened the medical teams' years to work abroad and adjusted the work content. We also provided support for the construction of medical specialties, medical personnel training and introduction of new technologies and therapies abroad. We encouraged the medical teams to carry out free treatment in the long and short term, and technical training to relieve the suffering of the people in the recipient countries.

Our health and family planning workers will, in the international humanitarianism spirit, continuously improve the health aid in accordance with the Party Central Committee's plan. 

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