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Straight from the heart

By Liu Xiangrui | China Daily | Updated: 2017-04-21 09:12
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Chinese doctor Chen Shaoliang from Nanjing No 1 Hospital meets Stone and his wife in Nanjing. [Photo provided to China Daily]

Stone says he is surprised by the advances made in medicine by China over a short period of time.

"What's been accomplished in the past 15 years is that the research coming out of China is now being applied to the whole world," he says.

"Initially it was us trying to help China, but now China is working to help us and the rest of the world," he adds.

Stone received the Friendship Award in 2016.

The award is the highest honor given by the Chinese government to foreigners who have made significant contribution to the country's social and economic development.

"I am very proud if I have played a small role in contributing to the health of people in China. I hope that opportunity will continue, because there is more work to be done."

He has also been invited as a high-level expert to give his own suggestions to the Chinese government for the country's medical development.

While China has established many hospitals and laboratories with good facilities, he says more doctors need to be trained to make the sector better able to deliver medical care.

"In a country with such a large population, medical care can be very hard to be delivered consistently. But I think we are on our way to doing it," he says, adding that in the next decade, hospitals in the big cities will need to spread the lessons they have learned to smaller places for the entire country to benefit.

Stone got interested in medicine as a teenager, after he volunteered to transport patients in wheelchairs at a hospital.

"Medicine allows me to express my deep interest in science and in solving problems. And now it is helping other people," he says.

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