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Chinese rural health wins more investment

Siemens has inaugurated its five-year, rural healthcare project in China with a total investment of USD 10m in a ceremony held in Beijing on 14 April, while the Chinese government has invested approximately USD 62.5m in the rural health support programme since its launch in 2005

Siemens invests in Chinese rural health care projectÖ

German healthcare solutions provider Siemens has inaugurated its five-year, rural healthcare project in China with a total investment of USD 10m in a ceremony held in the Great Hall of the People, Beijing, on 14 April.

The aim of the project is to improve access to healthcare services for people in rural areas of China. The company says the money will be used to equip a county-level hospital with a full range of appropriate diagnostic imaging equipment, including ultrasound, X-rays and CTs.

The investment will also provide relevant medical and application training to support the education and training of doctors. The western Chinese province of Shanxi will be host to the first Siemens Rural Centre of Medical Excellence.

Siemens paid USD 10m (EUR 7.4m/GBP 5m) for rural healthcare in China in 2006. Chinaís Ministry of Health will offer policy guidance, while China's Association of Medical Equipment will also support the project.

Rural health investment passes USD 62m mark...
The Chinese government has invested approximately CNY 500m (USD 62.5m/EUR 47.7m) in the rural health support programme since its launch in 2005, according to an official press release.

The project involves over 10,000 physicians from 518 cities placed in hospitals in central and western regions of China, as well as 592 other poverty-relief projects. The project involves health administration and pharmaceutical departments from all levels of government, according to a General Administration of the Ministry of Health (MoH) spokesperson.

MoH statistics show that the project has helped treat more than two million patients and the training of nearly 560,000 local physicians. In addition, the project has placed 3,000 new trainees and the adoption of over 4,400 new techniques and procedures in rural hospitals.

HIV rates increase...
Rates of HIV/ AIDS in Shenzhen city, China, have increased 58.3 per cent since the city began recording cases in 1992, according to the Shenzhen Centre for Disease Prevention and Control.

According to statistics from the Shenzhen municipal CDC, the city reported 622 new HIV infections in 2006. Among them, 84 had developed AIDS and nine had died. Official figures report that HIV has claimed 70 lives in the Special Economic Zone since 1992.

By the end of 2006, the total number of reported HIV/AIDS infections in Shenzhen since 1992 had risen to 2,016, which included 430 full-blown AIDS presentations.

Shenzhen CDC says that the sexual transmission of HIV/AIDS had surged in the city, but the main route of infection is intravenous drug use, which accounted for around 55.5 per cent of all HIV/AIDS cases in the city.

The Chinese government reported 183,733 HIV and AIDS presentations in 2006, which is an increase of 30 per cent on 2005 figures. The increase was partly due to improvements in case reporting, according to officials.

The Chinese Ministry of Health estimated that the actual number of people living with HIV/AIDS in China in 2005 was 650,000, many of whom remained unaware of their disease status. The figure is also quoted by international AIDS charity AVERT (AVERTing HIV & AIDS).

Injecting drug user accounted for 37 per cent of newly reported cases in 2006, while sexual transmission accounted for 28 per cent, an increase of 10 per cent since 2002. The prevalence of HIV/AIDS in female sex workers increased to one per cent in 2006, up from 0.02 per cent in 1996.

According to AVERT, China is experiencing one of the most rapidly expanding HIV epidemics in the world. Some experts have projected that the number people living with HIV/AIDS in China will exceed 10m by 2010, if there is not enough effort to control the epidemic.

18th April 2007

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