Innovation of China-Africa South-South Health Cooperation Seminar Held in Beijing

Innovation of China-Africa South-South Health Cooperation Seminar Held in Beijing

On May 22-23, the Innovation of China-Africa South-South Health Cooperation Seminar was held in Beijing, aiming to seek for constructive advice from key stakeholders on the innovation plan of China’s development aid for health (DAH) projects, based on the initial research findings from the research team.

Organized by the National Health Research and Development Center (NHDRC) with the support from Duke Kunshan University, the seminar is a milestone for the Gates-funded health-related Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) project led by Prof. Shenglan Tang, executive director of the global health program at Duke Kunshan.

Approximately 50 speakers from government, academia, international organizations, funding agencies and DAH project implementation institutions attended the seminar.

Innovation of China-Africa South-South Health Cooperation Seminar Held in Beijing

The 2-day seminar consisted of welcome remarks, keynote speeches and consultation sessions. The seminar began with four welcome remarks from Dr. Wei Fu, Director of the NHDRC; Dr. Yong Feng, Deputy Director-General of the Department of International Cooperation, NHFPC; Alex Ng, Deputy Director of Gates Foundation Beijing Office and Prof. Shenglan Tang respectively. Three keynote speeches were delivered by 1) Dr. Martin Taylor with the WHO China Office, on Innovative Partnership Build-up with China to Promote South-South Health Cooperation, 2) Dr. Shiyong Wang with the World Bank, on How to Improve Health Aid Effectiveness: Lessons Shared with China and 3) Prof. Anshan Li with Peking University, on How to Improve China’s Health Aid Effectiveness through Innovative Aid Models.

The consultation part consisted of four themed sessions: health facility construction, China medical teams, human resources and public health programs. In each session, government officials introduced current situation, issues and innovation thoughts and DAH project implementers talked about on-going innovative models. The research team introduced the initial findings followed by the 1.5-hour consultation discussion on current issues, possible solutions and the way forward.

The seminar was very productive and the research team received valuable suggestions from the attendants. Some key take-home messages are: 1) the China’s DAH projects need to “improve blood generation instead of always relying on blood transfusion” and “it is better to teach a person to fish, rather than give them a fish”; 2) there is need for improved work on needs assessment of the recipient country and the capacity assessment of China to generate more effective and sustainable DAH projects; 3) it is necessary to conduct well-designed impact evaluations on the DAH projects; 4) a more strategic plan from the central government is essential to change the current aid-fragmented situation.

China National Health and Family Planning Commission, Ministry of Health in Zanzibar and Sierra Leone, the World Health Organization, the World Bank, the UNICEF, China-Africa Development fund, Duke University/Duke Kunshan University, University of Washington, China Sino-pharm International Corporation, a few hospitals in Sierra Leone, Ghana and China, and other institutions participated in this event. 

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