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Medical aid brings China, Africa closer

By Wu Yong in Shenyang | chinadaily.com.cn | Updated: 2021-11-29 21:55

Medical skills are not all that will be needed for the Chinese team of doctors preparing to go to Gambia on a service mission. Looking good makes a difference, too. That's why Wang Guang, attending physician of First Hospital of China Medical University, has spent two weekends learning how to give haircuts. 

Wang expects it's going to be tough to find good stylists in the poor African nation, and team members need to look professional. So he decided to fill the gap himself.

"I hope to learn this new skill," Wang said. "Our medical team needs to present a handsome image of China to the world and win the respect of local patients."

Wang is part of the fifth group of the China (Liaoning) medical aid team to Gambia, which is now preparing to set off.

The COVID-19 pandemic brought severe medical challenges to to Africa last year. Medics and their families are working hard to overcome the difficulties.

"Medical aid from China to foreign countries won the recognition and respect of local people and built a bridge of friendship between the Chinese and African peoples," said Gao Mingyu, deputy director of the Liaoning Provincial Health Commission.

Since the 1960s, China has sent a total of 23,000 medical team members abroad, covering more than 50 countries and regions in Africa. They have treated 230 million patients.

The team subscribes to high humanitarian standards, according to Sun Jiaxing, the team leader for Gambia and associate professor at Shengjing Hospital of China Medical University.  

"Although the country has boundaries, doctors have no boundaries. We will transcend national borders and color, carry forward the spirit of internationalism and stick to humanitarian assistance," Sun said. 

"We observe with our hearts and give with our hands. We will give priority to saving lives through thick and thin, with total devotion and ultimate love."

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