Health Minister Adam leads team to People’s Republic of China | 24 August 2019
Health Minister Jean-Paul Adam is leading a delegation on an official visit to the People’s Republic of China to further strengthen ties in the health sector between the two countries.
The minister held high-level talks in Beijing with the minister in charge of the National Health Commission, Ma Xiao Wei, on Monday August 19. In the meeting, he underlined the appreciation of Seychelles for China’s support in the health sector and the two health leaders also exchanged on future cooperation between the countries.
The minister was accompanied in the meeting by Seychelles’ ambassador in Beijing Vivianne Fock Tave, Dr Loren Reginald, special adviser to the minister, and Dr Danny Louange, chief executive of the Health Care Agency.
Three focal areas for future cooperation have emerged from the discussions.
Firstly, Minister Adam outlined the equipment needs of the Seychelles’ health sector linked to the hospital redevelopment plan as well as the renewal of diagnostic and treatment services at community level, with a view for Seychelles to tap into China’s world leading health technologies.
During the visit, the delegation had the opportunity to also visit health equipment exhibitions, as well as health equipment manufacturers, to ascertain the technology available and its suitability to Seychelles’ situation.
The second focal area is for capacity building of the health sector. Minister Adam outlined the challenges that Seychelles as a small island developing state faces with regard to training an appropriately skilled health workforce.
The Chinese government has confirmed its willingness to help with regard to scholarships in the health sector, and these can include studies in medicine, as well as relating to allied health professions such as physiotherapy, laboratory services, pharmacist services, as well as nursing and other professions of the sector.
The minister also impressed on the importance of developing avenues for the specialisation of Seychellois doctors, with record number of young doctors entering the medical service over the last two years. Chinese hospitals offer high quality environments for specialisation, including in many innovative clinical and surgical techniques.
The third focal area is in relation to the development of partnerships between institutions in the two countries. It is in this context that the minister also undertook a visit to Shandong Provincial hospital in Jinan City, Shandong Province. Shandong Provincial Hospital has already been engaged in partnerships with Seychelles through the deployment of medical teams that have been working in Seychelles since 1986. The minister highlighted the importance of the medical teams to the development of the health sector in Seychelles and also expressed his wish that further research and publications can be developed through this partnership. A more in depth and direct partnership will also facilitate more benefits from short courses, attachments and fellowships for Seychellois medical experts in China.
The visit also allowed the delegation to further explore opportunities for Seychelles to develop such traditional Chinese medicine practices such as acupuncture, which is already being successfully implemented in Seychelles with the support of the Chinese medical team.
During his visit to China, the minister will also be visiting a specialist hospital in Shanghai to further explore such avenues of cooperation.