China and Zimbabwe have inked a significant agreement aimed at providing free cataract surgery to patients in Zimbabwe, marking another milestone in the medical cooperation between the two nations.
The agreement, known as the "Bright Journey" Program, was signed by Chinese Ambassador to Zimbabwe, Zhou Ding, and Zimbabwe's Minister of Health and Childcare, Douglas Mombeshora, at a ceremony held at the Parirenyatwa Group of Hospitals (PGH) in Harare, Zimbabwe's capital.
Under the agreement, a team of Chinese ophthalmologists will be dispatched to Zimbabwe to conduct free cataract operations for approximately 600 patients. Ambassador Zhou emphasized that this initiative not only signifies the latest advancement in medical cooperation but also includes academic exchanges and training sessions for local medical personnel.
Upon the completion of the program, all medical equipment, consumables, and supplies used during the operations will be donated to Zimbabwe, further bolstering the country's healthcare infrastructure.
Minister Mombeshora expressed gratitude to the Chinese government for its continued support, highlighting the positive impact of previous cataract extraction camps organized under the "Bright Journey" initiative. He emphasized that the program will not only benefit patients but also provide invaluable learning opportunities for Zimbabwean ophthalmologists through collaboration with their Chinese counterparts.
As part of the cooperation, China also donated medical equipment and consumables to PGH to support its development of pulmonary and critical care, a gesture lauded by Minister Mombeshora as a significant contribution to healthcare in Zimbabwe.
Following the signing ceremony, Ambassador Zhou, Minister Mombeshora, and other officials toured the Traditional Chinese Medicine and Acupuncture Center (TCMAC) at PGH. Established in 2020, the TCMAC offers free Traditional Chinese Medicine and acupuncture diagnosis and treatment services to the local community, further enhancing healthcare access in Zimbabwe.
The collaboration between China and Zimbabwe in the medical field dates back several decades, with China dispatching medical teams to Zimbabwe since 1985. This partnership underscores the longstanding friendship between the two countries and their commitment to improving healthcare delivery and access to medical services for all.