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Village Doctor Trainings

In 2005, a moving story touched the deepest heart of every Chinese. A female village doctor, Mrs. Zhang, Chunyan, set up a primitive village clinic to provide medical services to the local peasants for years and almost free of charge because the peasants there were too poor to pay for the medicine, not mentioning the medical services. Chunyan was not rich, too. When she decided to go out of the village to earn more money as the small village clinic couldn’t continue providing medical services anymore, all the villagers came to ask her to stay as she was the only doctor in the village and they promised to sell their rice, their cows to pay for the medical fees. This was not a single story in the vast land of China.

There are 450 million farmers in China who cannot afford medical treatment. Disease has become one of the most significant reasons for poverty among Chinese famers in the countryside.

According to a report from the south mountainous area in Ningxia, approximately 60% people there cannot afford to see a doctor, 33% cannot afford hospital stay, and 74.1% people live below poverty line again due to diseases. Delayina medical treatment and misdiagnose are common. Most villages do not have clinics, and clinics that do exist are not equipped with even the basic equipment or well-trained doctors.

The lack of basic equipment and eligible doctors who have been trained with the primary skills to deal with common diseases is the reason that many farmers cannot get the immediate medical treatment they need.

According to the latest data, there are nearly 900,000 village doctors working the rural area, and less than 10% received professional trainings. The lack of professional skills limits largely the medical service level in the countryside.

To enhance the training of in-service village doctors, Chinese State Department promulgated a statute in 2005, requiring village doctors to acquire at least two years of medical training. However, the problem arises that the training offered by the local county medical department are too expensive for many of the doctors.

To supplement the current state training system, the Chinese Red Cross Foundation (CRCF) launched a new program named

“Ten Thousand village doctors training program” in 2006. The goal is to allow 10,000 (or more) village doctors to get free medical training in 3 to 5 years, by gathering donations from the public, in hopes of improve the medical treatment quality in rural areas in China.



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