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Chinese Rescue Team Starts All-out Medical Efforts in Haiti

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After 20 hours in the air, China's International Rescue Team has arrived in the Haitian capital of Port-au-Prince. Immediately after their plane touched down, they set out for the quake-hit areas. According to an operational plan, they began rescue work at the headquarters of the UN Stabilization Mission in Haiti, offering medical treatment to suffering locals.

This is one of the treatment centers near the Prime Minister's office compound. 15 members of China's international rescue team are offering treatment to the injured. But as a result of around the clock efforts, doctors are worried they will not have enough medicine.

Hou Shike, Medical Leader of China International Rescue Team, said, "We are trying our best. There is an influx of patients with trauma. And we are in desperate need of medicine, especially antibiotics. Many patients are showing symptoms of infection."

Hot weather, scarce medication, and a lack of professional medical personnel, all complicate the mission for the team.

The lawns nearby the Prime Minister's office are packed with thousands of patients waiting for help. But doctors say the insufficient supply of medicine will hamper the treatment process for many, warning of a possible epidemic in the wake of the quake.

These are the ruins of the United Nations' Stabilization Mission in Haiti. When the earthquake struck, many UN staff were buried under the collapsed building.

With the help of heavy-duty equipment, China's rescue team is making progress in its search for survivors.

Huang Jianfa, Head of China's International Rescue Team, said, "The whole construction is totally destroyed. We are conducting a comprehensive search for anyone buried underneath."

After a 20 hour flight, the team has put in another 18 hours on the ground.

They use tools designed to detect signs of life and sniffer dogs to locate buried survivors. Heavy-duty machines are very effective in clearing rubble.

China's rescue team is also collaborating with other international aid forces, such as ones from the US and Brazil.

In the heart of every rescue worker, one thing outweighs all others: time is of the essence.

(CCTV January 15, 2010)

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