Japan's Sasakawa Memorial Health Foundation and the Japan-China Medical Association held on Wednesday night in Tokyo a joint reception, welcoming the arrival of the last group of Chinese medical postgraduate students and professional researchers. They will pursue further studies through the 20-year Sasakawa Medical Scholarship program.
The cooperative scholarship was signed between China and Japan in August 1986 and began operation the following year. Financed by the Sasakawa Memorial Health Foundation and operated by the Japan-China Medical Association, the program has run smoothly for 19 years. 2007 is the last year of the program.
Addressing the reception, Director General of the Japan-China Medical Association, Morioka Yasuhiko, expressed his hope that the 102 visiting Chinese postgraduate students and special researchers would make the most of their one-year term and do their part to promote medical cooperation and friendship between the two nations.
Under the program, China sent about 100 Chinese doctors and nurses to Japan every year for them to pursue further studies or research at medical universities and hospitals around Japan. Between 1987 and 2007, the Sasakawa Foundation financed scholarships worth a total of 7.9 billion yen, or about US$670 million.
So far, over 1,700 Chinese postgraduate students and 236 special researchers have attended the program in Japan and returned to serve the country.
Another official with the Japan-China Medical Association expressed that Japan will consider inviting more Chinese medical professionals to Japan for advanced education. This will be done in the future in a bid to further enhance medical cooperation and friendship between the two neighbors.
(CRI April 6, 2007)