Health ministry to hold monthly press conference
Updated: 2005-12-28 08:46
Starting from 2006, the Ministry of Health (MOH) will release news at a given
date every month, Health Minister Gao Qiang said in Beijing on
As of Jan. 1, 2006, MOH will hold a news conference at 10 a.m. of the 10th
day of each month, or the next working day if the 10th is a holiday or a
weekend, said Gao at a meeting with major Chinese media including Xinhua News
Agency, the People's Daily and China Central Television.
At news conferences, the spokesperson and relevant officials of MOH will
answer questions from journalists on major health events, Gao said. Meanwhile,
MOH will also release breaking or significant public health news on an irregular
basis, he said.
Health is always a major concern for the public. Medical reform,drug safety
and epidemic scares often dominate the frontpages of newspapers and are topics
of everyday conversation, said MOH spokesman Mao Qun'an.
"Thus the ministry needs to give prompt, concise information tothe public on
the public health sector, so as to eliminate doubts and misunderstandings and
kill rumors as well," Mao told Xinhua.
In 2005, the MOH information office held 47 news conferences and arranged
more than 380 interviews for journalists, while in 2004, it held 40 news
conferences and accepted 218 interview requests from the media.
"Our news release mechanism has improved a lot since the SARS crisis and the
outbreak of H5N1 avian influenza. We will try to do better in the future," said
MOH set up its information office in 2000 and its spokesman started speaking
to the media in March 2004. Regular reports on infectious diseases and news
releases on public health emergencies began in 2004.