The Chinese medical teams to Sierra Leone have made constant contributions to improving the country’s medical service over the past 50 years, Sierra Leonean Health Minister Austin Demby has said.
Speaking at a photo exhibition to mark the 50th anniversary of China sending its first medical team to Sierra Leone on Wednesday, Demby said the training provided by the Chinese medical teams to local medical staff is important and constant progress has been made over the years.
“Our local medical staff have learned a lot,” the minister said.
Describing China as “a true friend indeed” to Sierra Leone in both good and challenging times, Demby called on China to continue to help strengthen the country’s health sector.
The exhibition showcased hundreds of photos featuring Chinese medical teams working together with local counterparts to treat patients at various times.
Chen Yongjun, head of the 24th Chinese medical team to Sierra Leone, said: “Over the years, Chinese doctors have been actively involved in preventing and treating infectious diseases and common illnesses, and we have also brought many cutting-edge technologies and traditional Chinese medical therapies to the country.”
“This event not only demonstrated the achievements of China’s medical assistance, but also showed the long-standing cooperation between China and Sierra Leone,” Chen added.
Chen said that nine months into the mission, the current team has performed 320 surgical operations, treated more than 15,000 patients, and provided free medical service on six trips to local communities, benefiting around 1,000 residents.
China sent its first medical team to Sierra Leone in 1973, and has since dispatched a total of 24 teams.
Distributed by APO Group on behalf of Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC).