Beijing hospitals sharing expertise

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Beijing has provided aid to medical institutes in neighboring Hebei province to ease overcrowding in the capital's hospitals by treating patients near their homes.

Since 2014, Beijing has increased cooperation with hospitals in Hebei province's Yanjiao, Zhangjiakou and Caofeidian by providing experts for surgeries and helping to train doctors and nurses in Hebei hospitals, Gao Xiaojun, spokesman for the Beijing Municipal Commission of Health and Family Planning, said on Tuesday.

Gao cited a commission survey that found about 23 percent of patients in Beijing hospitals were Hebei residents in 2014. As the integration of the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei cluster was elevated to a national strategy, Beijing's hospitals have been trying to help improve medical services in Hebei that could better serve local patients, he said.

"Our goal has been set that locals don't have to go to Beijing but can receive treatment from Beijing's doctors and experts," he said.

Yanjiao, a small town in Hebei's Langfang city, is adjacent to Beijing's Tongzhou district on the other side of the Chaobai River. The town is just 30 kilometers from Tian'anmen Square and is home to about 300,000 people - more than 40 percent of its total population - who work in Beijing.

Because of those numbers, a pilot program was conducted in Yanjiao in 2014 after President Xi Jinping promoted the integration plan. Yanda Hospital, a private nonprofit medical institute covering 33 hectares of land, formed a cooperative partnership with Chaoyang Hospital in May 2014. Chaoyang Hospital ranks among the city's best.

Last year also saw Yanda sign cooperation agreements with three other prestigious hospitals and medical institutes in Beijing - Tiantan Hospital, Beijing Hospital of Traditional Chinese Medicine and the Hospital affiliated with the Capital Institute of Pediatrics.

Hou Yanning, president of Yanda Hospital, said experts from Beijing were able to tackle difficult conditions for patients and would also tutor her doctors.

Yanda received 156,000 patients in outpatient services last year, a year-on-year increase of 65 percent. This number was almost triple that of 2013 before the cooperation was undertaken.

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