Delivery of 170,000 Bottles of Azvudine Tablets During Spring Festival to Help Rural Areas Weather the Epidemic
HONG KONG, Jan. 31, 2023 /PRNewswire/ -- In response to the infection peak season of COVID-19 in rural areas that may be brought about by people returning home during Chinese New Year, Fosun Foundation announced on 9 January 2023 the cooperation with Fosun Pharma and Genuine Biotech to donate RMB100 million worth of Azvudine tablets, the oral medication for COVID-19, helping the grassroots to weather the epidemic. As of 29 January 2023, under the campaign of "A Healthy Winter Action", a total of 173,200 bottles of Azvudine tablets have been donated to 116 counties in 19 provinces, municipalities, and autonomous regions, including Yunnan, Tibet, Xinjiang, Hainan, Anhui, Jiangxi, Ningxia, Sichuan, Chongqing, and Heilongjiang. Azvudine tablets, the first domestically developed small molecule medication for COVID-19 has helped at least 150,000 villagers get through the epidemic more safely, most of whom were seniors over 65.
Since its inception, "A Healthy Winter Action" has faced two major challenges. First, how to deliver materials to the grassroots during the peak-travel period of Spring Festival? Second, how to accurately distribute medicines to the villagers who are in need of medicine?
While negotiating cooperation with SF Express, Fosun Foundation urgently recruited nearly a hundred employee volunteers within Fosun and its subsidiaries. Coordinating with their plan of returning home during the Spring Festival, the volunteers personally delivered medication to the donated counties.
In addition to Fosun employee volunteers, SF Express also fully supported the donation. The delivery of medication did not stop during the Spring Festival. Guo Shuai, Assistant Secretary-General and Project Director of Fosun Foundation, stayed in the office throughout the Spring Festival to make sure that the materials are dispatched to SF Express's transshipment warehouse immediately, and then delivered by air.
How to make sure that the most urgently needed villagers can receive medication in time? According to Ning Guang, Consultant of the COVID-19 Prevention and Control Expert Committee of the Rural Doctors Program and President of Ruijin Hospital affiliated with Shanghai Jiaotong University School of Medicine, "Rural doctors must have medicine in their hands, and the grassroots people must receive medicine in time". Fosun Foundation first covered the 72 counties in the Rural Doctors Program which has been running for five years, and delivered as much medicine as possible to rural doctors through the health department before the Spring Festival.
On 16 January, the first batch of 600 bottles of Azvudine tablets donated to Lancang County, Yunnan Province was delivered by Zhao Zhong, a resident member of the Rural Doctors Program, to the township hospital of Lancang County, and then to the village clinics. Zhong Liping, a rural doctor in Yanyin Village, Sakai Township, received a message from villager Zhong Asuo on the morning of the fifth day of the Chinese New Year, "Thank you for the Azvudine tablets sent by Fosun Foundation before Chinese New Year. My father felt much better the next day after taking the medicine." Before taking Azvudine tablets, Zhong Asuo's 87-year-old father had fever, cough and other symptoms. When she learned that Fosun Foundation had donated to Lancang County, Zhong Liping immediately thought of distributing medicine to the elderly. Zhong Liping said, "It is this kind of feedback that makes me realize the importance of being a rural doctor."
In order to improve the diagnostic skills of rural doctors, Fosun Foundation and Shanghai Guangci Translational Medical Research Foundation jointly established an expert committee led by Chen Erzhen, Vice President of Ruijin Hospital. Medical experts from more than 20 provinces provided targeted training for rural doctors in the form of recorded courses and Q&A sessions. Relevant training has been launched on the app of Fosun Health and People's Good Doctor. So far, more than 15,000 rural doctors have received the training online. On 13 January, with the organization of the Guizhou Provincial Health Commission and Fosun Foundation, Zhang Wenhong, a member of the expert committee, Director of the National Medical Center for Infectious Diseases, and Professor of Huashan Hospital affiliated to Fudan University, conducted a special online training for rural doctors in Guizhou.
Along with the medicine, 37 care packages worth RMB150,000 were sent to the grassroots, which contained medical supplies that were in short supply at the grassroots, such as oximeters, oxygen concentrators, face masks, and nitrile gloves. These packages were donated by public welfare partners including Industrial and Commercial Bank of China, the New Social Stratum "New Philanthropy Program" under the United Front Work Department of CPC Central Committee, Shanghai Pudong Development (Group) Co., Ltd., Taiping Pension Co., Ltd., YouChange China Social Entrepreneur Foundation, Pingdingshan Volunteers Association, Chengdu Charity Federation, S.F. Express Group (Shanghai) Co., Ltd., Yeswood, Wuxi Qicheng Industrial Co., Ltd., Institute of Innovations, Tongxinhui, Xinjiang Juchen Law Firm, Jiangsu No. 33 Business Management Co., Ltd., Wuxi Yushou Medical Appliances Co., Ltd., Shanghai Tuyue Business Advisory Co., Ltd., Power Construction Corporation of China, and Shanghai Charity Foundation Xuhui District Representative Office Ningguo Temple 456 Cultural Special Fund, and benevolent enterprises of ONE Fosun such as Shede Spirits, Jinhui Liquor, Hainan Mining, and Golte.
In addition, in order to strengthen the digital capability of primary healthcare institutions, Shanghai Aitrox Technology Co. Ltd., a subsidiary of Fosun, donated digital imaging systems, digital ultrasound systems and refined operation services to primary township hospitals, covering 10 township hospitals by the end of April this year, with the first batch of donations amounting to approximately RMB5 million.
On 28 January 2023, the first day of work, the project team resumed regular meetings twice a day. At the regular meeting that night, Chen Qiyu, Co-CEO of Fosun International, said, "We have completed half of the RMB100 million medicine donation, and reached 2/3 of the goal of donating to 180 counties. We must continue to race against the virus and prepare for the next wave of infection peaks. For example, we must cover at least another 20 counties in the Tibet Autonomous Region; we must focus on protecting the elderly in cities below the third tier and in rural nursing homes. The donation of about 400,000 bottles of Azvudine tablets worth RMB100 million jointly initiated by Fosun and Genuine Biotech has been considered to be the largest public welfare donation of medicine in recent years. We hope play its due role in the revitalization of Chinese rural areas and the construction of a healthy China."
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