China's military authority has quadrupled medical supplies to forces stationed at high altitude areas to combat high altitude sickness, a common ailment among soldiers.
According to Sunday's People's Liberation Army Daily, the medical aid budget allocated to each soldier and officer stationed at posts 3,000 meters and more above sea level has been raised to 255.28 yuan (US$31.9) per year from 34 yuan for soldiers and 126 yuan for officers.
China's so-called "high altitude army" is mainly stationed in the Tibet Autonomous Region, western Qinghai Province, Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, and Yunnan Province to the southwest.
In addition to anti-high altitude sickness medication, a new skin care product has also been introduced to protect personnel from excessive ultraviolet radiation.
Further, there are plans to equip forces in Tibet and Xinjiang with small portable oxygen supply kits. Military hospitals in Tibet will also be supplied with a range of emergency facilities.
All medicine and equipment will be made available before September.
(Xinhua News Agency July 24, 2006)