By Sun Xingwei and Zhang Mi
A recent photo of Chen Weiwei. (Photo by Huang Bosheng)
Chen Weiwei is a chief physician in the Research Institute of Infectious Diseases Department of the Fifth Medical Center of the People's Liberation Army General Hospital and deputy to the 14th National People's Congress (NPC).
Chen Weiwei, as a member of the 4th and 5th batches of military medical expert team to Sierra Leone, has carried out medical assistance tasks there from 2019 to 2022.
"After I returned to China, my Sierra Leonean colleagues still kept communicating with me online and also asked for help when in difficulty. Medical treatment knows no boundaries. We have forged profound friendship," she said. Recalling the details of helping the Sierra Leonean people, Chen Weiwei is filled with emotion.
The medical conditions are quite limited in Sierra Leone, featuring high incidence of malaria and AIDS, and low level of laboratory diagnosis. With one-to-one instruction by batches of Chinese military medical experts to Sierra Leone represented by Chen Weiwei, the medical treatment capability of the local medical staff has been significantly improved, especially the level of clinical laboratory diagnosis. During the period in Sierra Leone, Chen Weiwei often led the members of the military medical detachment to investigate the local common disease spectrum, and drove hundreds of kilometers to deliver medicine to local villagers in remote and poor areas.
After the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, Chen Weiwei, who has been committed to the detection, clinical research and prevention of infectious diseases, and other members of the military medical detachment to Sierra Leone, jointly set up a series of potential markers for early detection of severe COVID-19 cases, prepared testing reagents, organized emergency drills, effectively improving the detection efficiency, and playing a positive role in fighting the pandemic there.
"From the moment we put on the white robe of the 'Chinese Military Medical Detachment', we have always borne in mind that we are not only the doctors who serve to save the lives of the wounded, but also the friendship envoys between China and Sierra Leone. We must go all out to perform our duties," said Chen.
After returning to China, Chen Weiwei has been fully devoted to basic clinical research of infectious diseases. As a newly-elected deputy to the 14th NPC, she has prepared relevant suggestions on strengthening the co-construction and sharing of military and civilian medical and health resources and promoting the integrated training of military and civilian medical personnel. "It is our duty to protect the health of service members and serve to strengthen the combat effectiveness of the troops," said Chen Weiwei.