by Zhang Jianhua
VIENTIANE, Aug. 8 (Xinhua) -- "I am really grateful. I did not think that the surgery could be so fast," the son of Soukhan, a Lao man, told Xinhua in Vientiane recently.
His 67-year-old father Soukhan was the first Lao patient to receive an operation by doctors from China's Peace Train.
On July 27, a team of 90 Chinese doctors from the People's Liberation Army (PLA) Peace Train arrived in Laos, including 34 well-known experts from various fields.
In recent years, the Chinese military has sent medical units to Haiti, Nepal and Pakistan for disaster relief after earthquakes, floods, and other medical security tasks. In addition, more than 100 groups of experts have also been sent to Laos, Zambia and other Asian and African countries to carry out medical aid.
Aside from surgery, the Chinese doctors from the Peace Train program also provided comprehensive consultations and explanations to Lao doctors about the major processes of surgeries.
Patients in a stable condition after receiving treatment from their Chinese surgeons are often discharged from hospital after around three days.
As per a previous agreement, Chinese doctors were supposed to provide medical services to 2,200 patients.
However, since then, as many as 6,500 people, including old veterans and local residents, have received treatment and check-up from Chinese doctors.
Vouane, a 73-year-old veteran from the Luang Namtha province in northern Laos, was among the patients receiving treatment from Chinese doctors.
Vouane was suffering from severe chronic obstructive pulmonary disease with pulmonary heart disease and diabetes. When he came to see the Peace Train doctors, his condition was determined as being critical.
After multi-disciplinary, joint consultations and several days of treatment, Vouane was able to walk for more than 1 kilometer from his home to hospital.
When seeing his doctors, the old man said excitedly "Thank you for saving my life!"
In addition to the provision of medical treatment for Lao military personnel and civilians, the Peace Train medical team also conducted in-depth exchanges and cooperation with Lao local doctors, and showed them a lot of advanced diagnosis and treatment technology.
"Chinese medical experts are experienced. They not only provided treatment to our officers and local people, but also provided specialist medical consultation on difficult cases, and successfully carried out surgery for patients with severe illness."
"Our doctors have learnt a lot from them, including new technologies, which will help us improve the level of medical treatment," Director of Lao Military Hospital 103, Khampheng Phumakeo, told Xinhua.
On July 31, Chinese experts on gastroenterology had coordinated with Lao doctors to conduct a painless gastrointestinal endoscopy on a 35-year-old Lao patient, the first of its kind in Laos.
Through lectures before the procedures as well as detailed instruction during the process, Lao doctors have mastered the new technology.
"Thanks to the Chinese medical team for teaching us this technology," said the Director of Endoscopy Department of Lao Military Hospital 103.
On Aug. 2, a center for teaching, training and examinations was inaugurated in Vientiane for Hospital 103.
"We are very grateful to the Chinese medical team for donating medical training models, which will greatly improve the training facilities' conditions and increase the opportunities of actual practices. This will also help to train Lao doctors with a good theoretical basis and improve their abilities during actual operation," said political commissar of Hospital 103.
In a recent meeting with the Peace Train team, Chinese Ambassador to Laos Wang Wentian said the volunteer activity reflects the friendship between the military and the people of China and Laos.
Wang spoke highly of the efforts of the Chinese medical team in promoting friendly cooperation between the two armies and the comprehensive strategic cooperative partnership between the two countries.
The Peace Train medical service's activities have been widely acknowledged and appreciated in Lao.
"This is the first time that the Chinese side has sent such a large scale medical group to work in Laos, which fully reflects China's selfless dedication and sincere friendship to Laos," said Vongkham Puammakon, Head of the General Logistics Department of the Lao People's Army.