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UPDATED: 09:06, May 17, 2004
China highlights psychological rehabilitation for handicapped
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China's efforts to help the handicapped in their psychological rehabilitation made a new step forward Sunday as a hot-line on psychological services for the vulnerable group was opened in Shenzhen in south China.

Experts say that psychological rehabilitation has become one of the major jobs for institutions and individuals who are engaged in assisting the handicapped.

Psychological rehabilitation refers to psychological interference by experts to help heal psychological hurts for handicapped persons through biological, psychological and social measures. It is important for the handicapped to participate in social life along with others on an equal ground.

In recent years, China has made notable achievements in the development of psychological rehabilitation for the handicapped. Some Chinese experts have gained international fame for their fruitful efforts in this field.

For instance, Qiu Zhuoying, director of the Institute of Information on Psychological Rehabilitation, under the China Research Center on Rehabilitation, is a consultant for the World Health Organization and the International Labor Organization.

In recent years, local disabled persons' federations in some big cities have opened special psychological consulting services for the handicapped.

In Beijing, the local psychological rehabilitation agency has recruited psychologists who are also with physical disabilities, so as to make the patients feel better and speak out their mind. Over 3,000 handicapped patients have come to the psychological consultants for help.

China is training more professionals for the special services to meet the demands of the country's handicapped population of 60 million. A number of universities, including the Xi'an Communications University and the Binzhou Medical Institute, have established special sections for the purpose.

The Handicapped Persons' Psychological Health Branch of the China Psychology Society plans to hold its fifth academic workshop in October this year to further promote the development in this field.

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