Keynote Address: Minister of Health at Medical Screening Program in Savaii

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Keynote Address by Honourable Valasi Luāpitofanua To’ogamaga Tafito Selesele
Minister of Health, at the launch of Free Medical Screening Program by Chinese Specialist Medical Team; Thursday 9th & Friday 10th December, 2021.

Reverend Setu Pitone (Ekalesia Metotisi, Satuiatua);
Your Excellency Chao Xiaoliang, Ambassador of The People’s Republic of China to Samoa;
Distinguished guests,
Ladies and Gentlemen,
On behalf of the Government of Samoa, I would like to acknowledge the ongoing assistance by the Government of China, towards Samoa’s long term development.
It goes without saying, that both our nations have enjoyed very close and most fruitful relations which we can date back to several decades.
In addition to wide assistance through multiple government Ministries and sectoral approaches, China has also shown its immense generosity through specific medical assistance.

This assistance has come in the form of visiting Chinese Medical Specialists – such as the medical team we have here with us today, humanitarian assistance – through the donation of medicines, medical equipment and PPE’s (personal protective equipment) and assistance through human resource development, through trainings and short term attachments in Chinese hospitals for our doctors, nurses and specialist staff.

Finally but not the least, it was through the kind assistance of the Government of The People’s Republic China that the construction of our current Tupua Tamasese Meaole Hospital and Ministry of Health Headquarters at Moto’otua was made possible.
The Ministry of Health has been fortunate to host an assortment of very experienced medical specialists from distinguished Chinese universities and hospitals – which has seen rotating teams of specialists spending up to 6 months in our National Hospital since 2018.

The composition of these teams have been tailored according to our evolving needs within the health sector.
The current Chinese Medical team as you see here with us today, consists of 8 (eight) medical professionals currently working at TTM hospital, from the distinguished First Bethune Hospital of Jilin University.

This Medical Team consists of the following specialists: an orthopedic or bone specialist, an ears nose and throat specialist (ENT) a gynecologists, a urologist, neurologist, intensive care specialist, pathologist and cardiologist.

They are expected to conclude their six month volunteer service this month, with a new medical team expected to arrive in the near future from China to replace them.
In collaboration with the Chinese Embassy of Samoa, this medical specialist team have kindly offered to provide free medical screening for select villages starting today with Savaii. In addition, they will be donating PPE’s for our village and district hospitals.

Today, you will all have the golden opportunity to have a free medical check conducted by these medical specialists.

On behalf of the Government and People of Samoa I wish to thank the Government of The People’s Republic of China, through the Chinese Embassy in Samoa – Your Excellency Chao Xiaoliang, for this great medical initiative and for availing these specialists to conduct this program here in our very own Savaii.

May God bless you all. Soifua ma manuia.