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Ceremony held to mark Taiwanese international health assistance

2012/08/29 17:18:49

Taipei, Aug. 29 (CNA) Taiwan celebrated Wednesday the 10th anniversary of a government-initiated international health program to provide medical staff from developing countries with training at Taiwanese hospitals.

The program, launched by the Department of Health and run by the Taipei Hospital, has benefited more than 600 trainees from 41 countries -- both Taiwanese diplomatic allies and countries without official ties with Taiwan, the department said.

Participants in the program include doctors, nurses and medical management staff, the hospital said, adding that it is cooperating with 22 other medical facilities in Taiwan on the initiative.

The program began on a small scale but has been expanded in recent years, said Taipei Hospital Superintendent Lin Shoei-loong, adding that some 100 foreign nationals take part in the program each year.

It also serves as an opportunity to showcase "Taiwan's advanced development in medicine," he added.

Wednesday's ceremony was attended by Deputy Health Minister Lin Tzou-yien, Foreign Minister Timothy Yang and various foreign officials based in Taiwan.

Several of the 21 current trainees also attended the ceremony and shared their experiences.

Among them is Tsengelmaa Tserendorj, a doctor from Mongolia who specializes in cancer treatment and is learning more about breast cancer at Taiwanese hospitals.

Taipei is "a good city," she said.

Citing the small number of poison centers in Vietnam, three women with medical backgrounds from the Southeast Asian country are staying in Taiwan for a year to receive training in the field of poison control and treatment at the Taipei Veterans General Hospital.

Bui Hai-ninh, a pharmacist, said that she hopes to contribute to more poison centers in her country.

A group of medical staff from Russia are also involved in the program, receiving training in the areas of Chinese medicine, physical therapy and cardiology.

Other trainees at the program are from Indonesia, Nigeria, the Gambia and the Philippines.

(By Elaine Hou)