China Coal Miner's Pneumoconiosis Treatment Foundation officials
said yesterday that 42 million yuan (US$5.2 million) has been
raised so far to help pay for more medical treatment for coal
miners with black lung disease.
Xinhua News Agency reported today that the funds came from 18
large state-owned coal mining businesses, and that 338 miners had
received treatment by September.
Pneumoconiosis, caused by long term exposure to mineral or
metallic dust, is a major occupational disease in China with over
580,000 patients, 140,000 of whom have died.
More than 200,000 coal miners have black lung disease, the form
of pneumoconiosis caused through inhaling coal dust over a long
period of time.
The fund plans to offer treatment to 600 workers next year and
endeavors to enlarge the annual number to 6,000-8,000 in three to
The treatment, not a cure, involves flushing the patient's lungs
with saline to reduce the amount of coal dust and alleviate the
symptoms, the most common of which is shortness of breath.
(Xinhua News Agency November 1, 2005)