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US Official Calls for Increased Sino-American Health Cooperation
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The United States and China can share more experience in medical and health service, said Michael O. Leavitt, Secretary of US Department of Health and Human Services, during his visit to southwest China's Sichuan Province.



US Health and Human Services Secretary Mike Leavitt and his wife Jacalyn play with panda cubs during a visit to a raising center in Chengdu, capital of Sichuan Province, yesterday.


Leavitt, who started his 10-day visit to China on Dec.7 at the invitation of Chinese Ministry of Health, visited rural clinics, medical stations and hospitals in Sichuan during his three-day visit.


He was briefed by provincial health officials on local medical infrastructures and disease control.


In Suining City's Tangjia township, Leavitt visited an eight-year-old girl who recovered from the H5N1 strain of bird flu in May. Leavitt praised local hospitals' rapid response to and proper treatment of the disease.


Health cooperation between the two countries should begin through people-to-people exchanges, he said.


During his meeting on Saturday with Jiang Jufeng, vice-governor of Sichuan, Leavitt said he hopes the United States and Sichuan will boost cooperation as the province boasts great potential on pharmaceutical and chemical industry.


According to the Sichuan health department, the province has conducted a series of medical cooperation with the United States since 1993.


A MOU signed between Sichuan Province and Utah this year has boosted large-scale cooperation on the research and development of traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) such as TCM treatment, education and academic exchanges, the department said.


Leavitt left Sichuan for Guangdong Province Sunday afternoon.


(Xinhua News Agency December 11, 2006)


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