Tuesday, 17 December 2013

A rural doctor's views on China's health reforms

Fengcheng Yuandu Clinic, a hospital in Yuandu township, Jiangxi province, is responsible for the health of 50,000 local residents and has gradually become a medical center serving surrounding areas in recent years.
Hospital Director Zou Huihua said he puts great effort into improving the quality of medical teams and the service of the hospital.
Ensuring the healthcare in townships like Yuandu and rural China is very important, Dr Zou said.
The Chinese government approved a series of proposals to improve the healthcare system in townships and villages during the most recent session of the CPC Central Committee congress held in November.
As an experienced doctor at the grassroots level for nearly 20 years, Zou believes what he has been doing is indeed meaningful.
"There are a lot of doctors in big cities," Zou said. "But in townships and villages they need people like me."

Zou was appointed to work in the Fengcheng Yuandu Clinic right after he graduated from college in 1994.
"To be honest, I was a little bit disappointed and upset back then," Zou said. "I didn't want to stay in little townships and a rural area."
So Zou quit his job and started in business, but eventually he decided to come back to the clinic after careful consideration.
Zou said farmers lacked medical care in the 1990s and he really wanted to do something to help change the situation.
But it has not been easy.
For the past dozen years, Zou has always been the first to get to the office and stayed late almost every night.
Zou said his wife is also a doctor at the clinic. Both of them are so busy a day off is rare.
"The reason I do that is because if there is a problem, I can fix it immediately. I don't want to risk people's lives," Zou said.
In 2011, villager Zeng Juhua swallowed pesticide and was in grave danger when she arrived at the hospital.
Though the doctor pumped her stomach, Zeng lost her heartbeat and stopped breathing.
Yet Zou and his colleagues didn't give up. They worked for eight straight hours to save her life by giving her top-quality emergency treatment.
Eventually, Zeng regained consciousness and her family showed great appreciation.
"The happiest thing for a doctor is seeing his patients recover," Zou said.
Zou said there is a shortage of doctors in rural areas who can handle emergency treatment.
"If we give the patient appropriate medical treatment without delay, we can save a life."
As the director of Fengcheng Yuandu Clinic, Zou is emphasizing improving the medical environment. He said they are now constructing a new building for the hospital.
Zou said professional training for young doctors is important as well.
He encourages them to take professional enhancement training courses and invites experts and experienced doctors to the clinic to give lectures.
Source: China Daily

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