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China has medical aid teams stationed in 42 African countries [TRANSLATION]

China has medical aid teams stationed in 42 African countries [TRANSLATION]

China has dispatched medical aid teams to 66 countries and regions, mostly to Africa

中国曾向66个国家和地区派遣医疗队 以非洲为主

Published August 9, 2013 on China Net

By Tang Jialei

The National Health and Family Planning Commission held a press conference this morning at which Ren Minghui, the head of the Commission’s Department of International Cooperation, said that China has dispatched medical aid teams to 66 countries and regions, with most teams being sent to Africa.

Ren added that the Chinese government has been involved in international medical aid for half a century. China sent its first medical aid team to Algeria in April 1963, and it has been dispatching teams to an increasing number of developing countries since then. In the past 50 years, China has sent medical aid teams to 66 countries and regions across Asia, Africa, Latin America, Europe and Oceania.

Ren further said that China currently has almost 1200 Chinese medical personnel stationed at 113 locations in 49 countries in developing regions, including doctors, nurses and other workers.

Ren added that most of the dispatched Chinese medical staff are working in the 42 African countries to which teams have been dispatched. These Chinese medical teams face onerous burdens in their daily clinical teaching and service, but their work has been commended by local governments and people.

Ren said: “Our medical teams have devoted themselves to promoting friendly relations between China and developing countries. Fifty medical personnel have lost their lives during service abroad.”

中国网8月9日讯 (记者 唐佳蕾)国家卫生计生委今天上午召开例行新闻发布会,国家卫生计生委国际合作司司长任明辉在会上表示,我们曾经向66个国家和地区派遣过援外医疗队,这些国家和地区中主要的还是非洲国家。

任明辉介绍说,援外医疗工作确实是一项持续半个世纪之久的政府工程。我们最早一支医疗队是1963年4月向阿尔及利亚派出的医疗队,从那之后我们一直坚持向更多的发展中国家派遣医疗。在过去50年的风风雨雨中,我们曾经向66个国家和地区,涉及到亚、非、拉、欧和大洋洲——派遣过援外医疗队。

任明辉说,目前,我们还向49个国家派有援外医疗队,在现在这个时间点上就有接近1200名中国援外医疗队的医生、护士、工作人员工作在非洲和一些发展中国家与地区,涉及的医疗点多达113个。

任明辉表示,这些国家和地区中主要的还是非洲国家,非洲的42个国家中有我们中国的援外医疗队。这些医疗队在大量的日常临床教学和服务过程中承担了繁重的工作和任务。当然,他们的工作也受到了受援国家政府和人民的好评。

任明辉说:“我们医疗队员也用自己的生命和鲜血缔结了中国和发展中国家友好关系的纽带,有50名中国医生、医疗队员将他们的生命贡献给了这些受援国的人民。”

Head of Chinese medical aid team in Guinea: Ten-fold increase in orthopedic patients seeking treatment after Chinese doctors arrived

援几内亚医疗队长:中国医生去后骨科病人增10倍

Published August 9, 2013 on China Net

By Xiao Bing

Today is the 50th anniversary of the first dispatch of China’s medical aid teams to foreign countries.

The National Health and Family held a press conference this morning in which it gave details about China’s international medical aid program. At the briefing, Kong Qingyu, the head of China’s 23rd medical aid team to Guinea and deputy chief physician at Beijing’s Anzhen Hospital, talked about his experiences participating in the program.

Kong explained that all 19 members of China’s 23rd medical aid team to Guinea were dispatched from Anzhen Hospital. The team was sent to the China-Guinea Friendship Hospital — the first among 30 hospitals that China has built in Africa.

“The orthopedics department there now has the most patients of all departments in the hospital. When we first arrived, the department was far behind the standards of most hospitals across the world, and its 20-bed ward only had three or four patients. After the Chinese medical team performed a number of major surgeries there, the number of patients visiting the department increased tenfold. The ward now has an endless stream of patients who visit the department on the recommendation of health officials, government officials and various other African people who are familiar with us,” Kong said.

Kong added that because African economies are relatively backward, African patients often do not go to the hospital for treatment when they first get sick, but instead wait until the illness becomes unbearable. This makes treatment difficult.

“I am a heart surgeon. In Europe or the US, most patients with congenital heart disease are diagnosed before they are 5 years old. In China, however, you often see 30- to 40-year-old patients who suffer from undiagnosed congenital heart disease. In Africa, there are 50- to 60- year-old patients who have undiagnosed congenital heart disease. Treating these patients is very hard because their pathology and physiology has changed. However, we have been able to successfully diagnose all the undiagnosed patients we see. As an expert, I am convinced that we as Chinese doctors have been very helpful to African people,” he said.

Kong also noted that health provision in Africa is poor so China’s medical aid to Africa is a long-term project. He added that African people — from officials to ordinary people — trust and love Chinese medical teams.

Kong further said that China’s medical teams are welcomed and treated with respect in Africa, and that Africans look forward to receiving help from the teams.

中国网8月9日讯(记者 肖冰)今年是中国援外医疗队派遣50周年。今日上午,国家卫生计生委召开例行新闻发布会介绍情况。在发布会上,我国第23批援助几内亚医疗队队长、北京市安贞医院副院长孔晴宇介绍了自己参加援外医疗工作的感受。中国网现场直播

作为中国第23批援几内亚医疗队长,孔晴宇介绍,中国第23批援几内亚医疗队19名队员,都是由北京安贞医院派出的。工作的地点是中国援助非洲的30家医院之一——中几友好医院,是最早开业的一家医院。

“比如说骨科,是在非洲病人最多的科室,它那里面的骨科也是跟世界水平差距最大的。我们刚去的时候,骨科病人有20人床位的病房,骨科病人每次只住三四个人。中国医疗队在那里做了几个大的手术之后,目前骨科的病人增加了10倍,病房都住满了,每天由卫生部的官员,由政府的官员,由各级熟悉中国人的非洲人介绍来的病人络绎不绝。”

孔晴宇说,非洲经济发展比较落后,所以它的病人在得病之初一般都不到医院治疗,直到实在坚持不住了,没办法的时候,才去医院,这种情况就造成了医务人员治疗疾病的困难。

“比如我是搞心脏外科的,在欧洲或美国,先天性心脏病的病人很少有超过5岁的,而中国经常看到30、40岁的先天性心脏病的病人,在非洲我就看到50、60岁的先天性心脏病病人。这部分病人病理、生理改变了,治疗起来的难度就很大。而我们见过这些病人,我们反而知道,所以我们中国医生是能够给非洲人民提供更大帮助的。这一点是我作为一个专家深刻感受到的。”

孔晴宇表示,非洲底子很薄,中国医疗队支援非洲的任务还是一个长期的、漫长的过程。同时,非洲人民对中国医疗队非常信任和爱戴,从官员到普通百姓,中国医疗队在非洲国家都受到了普遍的尊重和欢迎,非洲人民非常希望中国医疗队在那里给他们提供帮助。

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About Tendai Musakwa

Tendai Musakwa is a Zimbabwean journalist and researcher. Currently based in Shanghai, Tendai regularly translates Chinese news articles and microblog posts for the China Africa Project.