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Beijing hospitals to open 7 days a week during Olympics
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17:33, July 24, 2008

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· Beijing 2008 Olympic Games
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Hospitals in Beijing will be open seven days a week during the Olympics to better serve residents and visitors, although thousands of medical workers will also serve the Games.

The city health department also asked hospitals to make sure emergency rooms are open round the clock, Thursday's Beijing Times reported.

Beijing hospitals may be short-staffed, as 3,223 medical workers have been assigned to the Olympic venues, Jin Dapeng, a senior official of the city health department, told Xinhua. It will be a challenge for many to provide the usual level of service to residents, he said.

Except for a few top-level hospitals that are open seven days a week, most hospitals usually close on the weekends or operate for half days.

The health department also warned that hospitals must not use the Games as a pretext for not serving patients, for instance, refusing to do surgeries.

According to the department, the city has set up 18 emergency treatment centers at 13 top-level hospitals and included 91 other hospitals in an emergency network. They are able to receive up to 100 patients injured in any incident.


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