Hong Kong and mainland China strengthen healthcare collaboration

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The Secretary for Health, Professor Lo Chung-mau (third left), and Vice-minister of the National Health Commission Mr Yu Xuejun (centre) attend the closing ceremony of the Annual Training Programme on Tobacco Control 2023 organised by the Tobacco and Alcohol Control Office of the Department of Health this afternoon with the Director of Health, Dr Ronald Lam (third right), and other guests at the ceremony.

7th December 2023 – (Hong Kong) Secretary for Health, Professor Lo Chung-mau, met with a delegation led by the Vice-minister of the National Health Commission (NHC), Mr Yu Xuejun, to discuss the latest updates in Hong Kong’s healthcare policies and explore opportunities for enhancing medical collaboration between the Mainland and Hong Kong.

Professor Lo emphasized the increasing exchanges and cooperation on healthcare development between the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) and various Mainland provinces and cities, especially in the wake of the COVID-19 epidemic. These efforts aim to promote regional healthcare development and strengthen cooperation under the principle of complementarity and mutual benefits. The goal is to elevate the quality and efficiency of healthcare services in both regions, aligning with the nation’s strategy of a ‘Healthy China’ and contributing to the development of the Greater Bay Area and the country as a whole.

Later in the day, Professor Lo and Mr Yu attended the closing ceremony of the Annual Training Programme on Tobacco Control 2023, organised by the Tobacco and Alcohol Control Office of the Department of Health (DH).

During the ceremony, Professor Lo reaffirmed the HKSAR Government’s commitment to reducing smoking prevalence from 9.5 per cent to 7.8 per cent by 2025. He highlighted the ongoing efforts to collect public views on future tobacco control strategies, aiming to build a healthier, tobacco-free society. The goal is to work collaboratively with the public to achieve a vibrant, healthy, and tobacco-free Hong Kong, thereby safeguarding public health and mitigating the significant health and economic burden imposed by tobacco on society.

The DH, designated by the World Health Organization (WHO) in April 2012, established the Collaborating Centre for Smoking Cessation and Treatment of Tobacco Dependence in Hong Kong. This centre serves as a regional hub, providing support for smoking cessation training and aiding other member states/regions within the Western Pacific Region.

The Annual Training Programme on Tobacco Control, aligned with WHO’s tobacco control measures, equips participants with advanced tobacco control techniques and strategies, covering legislation, law enforcement, publicity, promotion, and the development of smoking cessation services. This program facilitates knowledge sharing through the experiences of overseas and local experts in tobacco control work.

The exchange activities were also attended by Under Secretary for Health, Dr Libby Lee, and the Director of Health, Dr Ronald Lam