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Home >> Life
UPDATED: 11:12, March 26, 2006
Community health club set up for migrant workers in E. China city
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Having run a bicycle repair business in Hangzhou, capital of the eastern Zhejiang Province for seven years, Qiu Shengchao, a 62-year-old migrant worker, finally feels part of the city after recently joining a special health club in his community.

"Now we may see a doctor at the community health club tailored to us migrant workers, and we may also receive regular physical check-ups provided by the doctors from the club," Qiu told Xinhua, standing in front of his little rented home in Yuquan District, which is inhabited by migrant workers like him.

"And all the services are free of charge," he added.

"In 1997, I had a slight stroke. Now I'm OK. You wouldn't have noticed it if I hadn't told you, would you?

"The stroke was caused by continuous high blood presssure. I'm alone here. I used to be careless about my physical condition. Now the club regularly provides free physical exam services at my home. And it keeps a record of the exam results for future diagnosis."

Qiu is among a large group of ordinary migrant workers covered by the service web of the community health club.

Founded in 2001, Yuquan District has a population of more than 5,200, of whom over two thirds are migrant workers.

In early March, the district and the West Lake People's Hospital jointly established the community health club for service of migrant workers.

"The free medical services for migrant workers have just begun. It's new in Zhejiang Province and even in the whole country. We still have a long way to go," said Zhao Jianguo, a general practitioner with the club.

According to an official with the municipal health authority, clinics will be founded in all communities in the city within the year. Some of them are likely to provide free medical care services for migrant workers, the officials added.

There are approximately 140 million migrant workers across China. Most of them have flocked to work in the booming coastal region like Zhejiang.

The working and living conditions of these migrant workers are one of the top concerns of the Central government. Measures are being taken to help the migrant workers recover their defaulted wages and ensure access to schooling for their children.

Source: Xinhua

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