China to rebuild medical system in quake zone by year-end

June 17th, 2008 - 10:52 pm ICT by IANS  

Beijing, June 17 (Xinhua) China has a timetable for rebuilding the medical care system in southwest regions hit by a massive quake last month, Health Minister Chen Zhu said Tuesday. Chen spoke at a meeting here attended by health department heads from across the country, which pledged to complete the reconstruction of those medical facilities by the end of this year.

The government has sent more than 10,000 medical personnel to Sichuan province, where the quake destroyed huge numbers of buildings, including many hospitals and health care stations in towns and rural regions.

“The infrastructure and basic facilities for medical care in the quake areas have been seriously damaged and many local medical personnel were killed,” Chen said.

According to the timetable, all medical teams from other parts of the country should send new personnel to relieve their advance squads by the end of June, the minister said.

By the end of July, basic medical care services should be available to all people living in resettlement areas and most of the quake-hit towns, he added.

As per the time table, the minister said, medical centres would be set up in counties and towns to provide regular health service by the end of September, and modern buildings and basic equipment would be ready in all quake-hit areas by the end of the year.

“Tasks to provide medical care services and prevention of epidemic disease in the quake zone will be at a critical juncture as summer is coming,” Minister Chen Zhu said.

The official expressed his concerns over dangers of heatwave and sunstroke harming quake victims who lived in resettlement zones where water and food could be polluted.

“The air temperature is rising and it could cause epidemics with insufficient public medical facilities,” Chen said, adding temperature in tents could rise to 45 degrees Celsius.

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