Minister praises medical teams in flood-hit areas

(China Daily)
Updated: 2007-07-17 06:49

FUYANG, Anhui: The newly appointed health minister said an "improved local public health infrastructure" had ensured no epidemics had broken out in the areas affected by the flooding of the Huaihe River.

Chen Zhu, who is on an inspection tour of Anhui, the most severely flood-hit area, said: "Medical services, the quality of drinking water and the diets of rural people have all improved."

He said the new-style rural cooperative medical system will be gradually extended with the cost mostly covered by the government.

"During the process, a financing system, a supervision system and some education and training will be needed," Chen said.

Meanwhile, local governments in Anhui are intensifying their efforts in disease prevention and disaster relief.

The personnel, material and technological preparation for coping with infectious diseases is in full swing, a local official said.

However, the country's disease prevention situation during the flood season is still severe.

Last week, an estimated 2 billion rats invaded 22 counties around the Dongting Lake in Hunan Province and along the Yangtze River, after their homes on islands in the lake were flooded.

Local authorities are on the alert for a possible disease outbreak caused by the rat invasion.


(China Daily 07/17/2007 page5)

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