KUALA LUMPUR, May 3 — A medical consultant expert team sent by the Chinese government wrapped up their two-week working visit to Malaysia on Sunday, during which they shared Chinese experiences in fighting the COVID-19 pandemic in a gesture of solidarity and friendship between the two countries.
According to XInhua News Agency, the team was seen off on Sunday at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport by Chinese Ambassador Bai Tian and representatives from Malaysia’s Health Ministry.
The team was organised by China’s National Health Commission and selected by the health commission of Guangdong province, comprised of eight health experts in various fields such as infectious disease, respiratory, intensive care, microbiology/virology, nosocomial infection and Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM).
During the two-week stay in Malaysia, members of the team shared China’s measures and experiences related to fighting COVID-19, based on their respective areas of expertise, said Li Jun, head of the Chinese anti-COVID-19 Medical Consultant Expert Team.
According to Malaysia’s Health Ministry, the expert team visited 13 medical institutes, public universities and research facilities in and around the capital city of Kuala Lumpur as well as in Sarawak and Sabah in east Malaysia. A total of 15 teleconferences were held throughout their visit.
“We wanted to share with our Malaysian friends on what China has experienced and what we have done in Guangdong Province to fight the pandemic; we wanted to share without reservation in the hope that they could apply what is suitable for them,” Li told reporters before leaving Malaysia, noting that “I think we have achieved that goal.”
During the discussions, Malaysian officials, doctors and experts have shown interest in learning from China’s experiences, including the application of TCM in treating COVID-19 patients in China, to which the expert team had provided detailed explanations, said Li.
“TCM has benefited the people in China, and we hope it would also benefit the people in Malaysia,” said Li, who is the vice-president of Guangdong Provincial Hospital of Traditional Chinese Medicine.
Xinhua also reported that at the end of their stay in Malaysia, the expert team held a wrap-up meeting with the Malaysian Health Ministry, in which they spoke positively of Malaysia’s measures undertaken in addressing the pandemic and in treating the patients.
“Malaysia’s fight against COVID-19 has been conducted in an orderly way,” said Li.
At the meeting, the Chinese experts also provided advice on ways to prevent a rebound of cases, safeguarding medical personnel and testing procedures, among others.
Following the meeting, Malaysian Health Minister Adham Baba said Malaysia has gained valuable insight into handling the COVID-19 outbreak from the experiences shared by the Chinese expert team.
“The shared experiences and knowledge gained from the multiple engagements with the medical expert team have been invaluable, and provided the Ministry of Health Malaysia better understanding of the COVID-19 pandemic,” he said.
This working visit has been a testament to the close relationship between the two countries and Malaysia looks forward to further collaboration with China for the benefit of the community in both countries, he added.
Malaysian officials said they are looking at further cooperation with China in fighting the pandemic, including the development of a vaccine. Li and his team are also looking forward to working with Malaysian counterparts on medical, technical and research cooperation in the future.
TOKEN OF FRIENDSHIP
Due to their busy schedule and Malaysian government’s restrictive measures to contain the outbreak, the expert team had little time to contact locals, but the team said they could all feel the hospitality of the Malaysian people.
Li recalled ordinary people showing thumb-up and saying thank you on several occasions during their visit. “Some would try to say ‘Xie Xie’, while some would gesture to us, and we would wave back,” he said.
The expert team said they were impressed by the professionalism and dedication of their Malaysian counterparts. They believe international cooperation is essential to win the fight against the pandemic.
“We must work together to fight infectious disease. A country is safe only when every other country is safe,” said Li. “No country could detach itself from an interconnected world.”
As of Saturday, Malaysia recorded a total of 6,176 COVID-19 cases, 4,326 or 70 percent of which have been cured and discharged, besides the total death of 103. The government announced that restrictions would be eased and most of the economy restarted on Monday following the recent decline of cases.
The experts said they hope their experiences could help Malaysia’s fight against the outbreak and that their visit would contribute to the friendship between China and Malaysia.
“I can say that our working visit is not only a trip to share experience, but also a trip of friendship to contribute to the deepening of the friendship between China and Malaysia,” said Li.
His view was echoed by Liu Xiangxin, the psychology expert in the team. “With the friendship and solidarity between China and Malaysia, we will win the fight against the pandemic together,” he said.