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Health Program Launched to Help Poor Villagers in W China

The Chinese Red Cross Foundation (CRCF) and the Guoshou Charity Fund (GCF) have jointly launched a "health for new village" program to help build village-based medical services in the remote western part of the country.

The CRCF has received 10 million yuan (US$1.32 million) in donations from the GCF, a charity fund set up by the China Life Insurance Company Ltd, as the initial fund for its rural health program.

"The donation will be used to build 100 philanthropic rural hospitals (clinics), train 200 rural doctors, and assist serious illness relieving projects and research programs in poverty-stricken areas in west China," said Wang Rupeng, secretary-general of CRCF.

The "Healthy New Village" program is an subsidiary to the existing CRCF program of "Red Angel", which was launched two years ago, Wang said.

The "Red Angel" program has received more than 100 million yuan from domestic and overseas donors. So far, the program has helped set up about 120 philanthropic rural hospitals, and helped donors to distribute medical equipment and medicines worth 200 million yuan (about US$26 million) to medical institutions in 25 provinces, autonomous regions and municipalities across the country.

More than 600,000 rural people have benefited from the program.

(Xinhua News Agency August 27, 2007)

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