Surgeon From Liaoning Won Praise From Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Mar 01,2023

Recently, senior officials from Ministry of Foreign Affairs have all given their thumbs-up to a Chinese surgeon’s extraordinary contribution on social media platforms.

“More African people are bound to benefit from the mission.”“It offers hope for better healthcare in the West African nation.”“Wonderful job, Chinese Medical Aid Team in Gambia!” Hua Chunying, Spokesperson of Foreign Ministry of the PRC, Wu Peng, chief of African affairs at China’s Foreign Ministry, and Liu Jin, Chinese Ambassador to Gambia, gave their praise one after another.

What exactly happened?

Li Yang, cardiologist from the first affiliated hospital of Chinese Medical University, received the mission in Chinese Medical Aid Team. It was at the beginning of last year that he started wondering how to better utilize China’s advantage on medical care so as to provide African people with better health services.

Li Yang is an experienced surgeon with many pacemaker implant surgeries successfully completed. According to his survey, heart attack has become a common disease in Gambia but the related operations can not be carried out in local hospitals due to the inexperienced surgeons and poor medical apparatus and instruments

“I have seen many cases of the bradycardia patients’ deaths due to their inability to be implanted with pacemakers and those who had to seek for treatment in other countries, the cost, however, is absolutely not affordable to common people in Gambia, such an  underdeveloped country,” said Li Yang.

On the medical team’s arrival in Gambia, Li Yang talked with the hospitals on the development of pacemaker implant surgery in order to save more patients.

According to local doctors in Gambia, pacemaker implant surgery, also as part of five-year development plan of internal medicine, is what the hospitals have long been looking forward to, but faces obstacles for development due to the high cost of pacemaker itself and absence of technological talents and catheter rooms. Chinese Medical Aid Team will be fully supported and praised for their creative work in accordance with local conditions if they are able to conquer all these difficulties.

Li Yang then got contact with domestic pacemaker manufacturers with the assistance from Chinese Embassy in Gambia and Liaoning Health Commission. Eventually, Lepu Medical Electronic Instrument Co., Ltd. from China agreed to donate pacemakers and made the in-time delivery to help the team in Gambia despite the breakouts of COVID-19 pandemic in China and other obstacles.

With concerted efforts of the whole team, the first “Cardiac Intervention Operating Room” was established in Gambia. On hearing Chinese Medical Aid Team’s arrival, a 82-year-old patient came a long way to the internal medicine department of the assisted hospital for treatment. Li Yang, as the surgeon, successfully completed the surgery in just 30 minutes. The patient was able to walk around next day and left hospital 3 days after. The patient recovered well and was able to do housework, living a normal life,according to the telephone follow-up two months later.

“Sunny Li, from Chinese Medical Aid Team, has made the first successful pacemaker implant surgery on a local patient in Gambian history,” reported STANDARD, local mainstream media of Gambia.

This was not the first time that Chinese Medical Aid Team received a thumbs-up. Short-term Medical Aid Team from Liaoning was highly praised by Government of  Gambia in 2021. The Gambian President Barrow said, “We have seen your love and efforts for this country and government and I really appreciate it.”

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