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Chinese medical team provides free treatment in rural Rwanda

By Lyu Tianran and Frank Kanyesigye KIBUNGO, Rwanda (Xinhua) -- The 18th China Medical Team in Rwanda on Wednesday launched a week-long free treatment activity in Rwanda’s Kibungo Cell.

Hundreds of local residents gathered at the health post in Kibungo, Eastern Province, around 9:30 a.m. to receive free medical care from the Chinese doctors. The doctors from departments of orthopedics, internal medicine, surgery, stomatology, acupuncture, anesthesiology and maternity provided consultations and treatment, after donating medicines to the health post.

“I have been suffering from painful swollen legs for the past two years and have visited several healthcare centers in my area,” said Jean d’Arc Mukandutiye, 47, who got diagnosis, medicines, recommendation of further medical checkup from the Chinese doctors.

“It’s expensive to access medical checkup and treatment in hospitals. I tried to get treatment in hospitals but I couldn’t afford,” said the mother of seven.

The patients at the site reported health problems ranging from dental problems, malaria, hypertension, diabetes, reproductive health, influenza, arthritis, typhoid to skin diseases.

Emmanuel Ndayambaje, who suffered a terrible headache for the past six months, said the health centers he visited failed to diagnose the problem. The Chinese doctors explained to him the cause of the headache, he said.

The 60 years old expressed his gratitude for the free medical services, as it has been difficult for him to access health services in Kigali due to his financial constraints.

Eugenie Imurinde, head of Kibungo health post, thanked the Chinese medical team for the work they have done for the health center.

“Many patients especially in rural areas fail to access treatment even for minor problems, due to lack of money for treatment and sometimes the long distances involved,” Imurinde said.

“When our health post can’t handle complicated health problems and refer these patients to hospitals, they don’t go because of financial difficulties,” she said.

Providing free treatment to Rwandans is one of the Chinese medical teams’ main assignments, according to the team leader Lu Jun. The team aims to provide Rwandan patients with convenience through such activities, she said.

China started to dispatch medical team to Rwanda in 1982, and there have been hundreds of medical staff working in Rwanda since then.



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