Health Care Check Ups for Migrant School Children
    2013-01-24 08:43:48         Web Editor: Mao Yaqing

A number of private organizations such as NGOs and individuals are helping migrant workers' children to get medical check ups.

As more and more migrant workers are flocking to big Chinese cities like Beijing to find work, they often bring their children with them hoping to provide them with a better life.

Simone Cote has more:


Recently a group of 46 migrant school children between the ages of 8 and 10 years old all had the opportunity to have their first ever annual health check ups at the Global Care Hospital in Beijing

Q: "What's Your Name?"

A: My name is Li Jiameng. I am 9 years old.

Q: "Are you nervous today?"

A: Yes, because it is my first time to have a check-up in a hospital.

Nine year old Li Jia Meng is similar to most children going to the doctors feeling nervous about being examined and having shots, but for her this is the first time she has ever had a health care checkup.

Q: "Hello, nice to meet you. How are you?"

Founded in 2009 by Helen Boyle, the Migrant Children's Foundation also known as MCF is a non profit organization that works with migrant communities in Beijing, China.

Helen says that for almost every child that has received a health care check up, it is their first time to visit the doctor.

"They don't have a check up at all in fact a lot of them if they have health issues, the parents they can't afford to actually, to actually seek treatment. So this is something for them for the parents to be sure that the child is ok, but also you know like what I said if there is an issue, they actually can tackle it from you know an early phase."

Q: "What is your name and how old are you?"

A:My name is Hou Yifei. And I am 10 years old.

Q:"Are you nervous today?"

A: A little bit.

Q: "Have you been healthy recently?"

A: I had a fever several days ago. Except of that, I am always healthy.

Q: "When you're sick, do you still have to go to school?"

A: Yes, I have to attend class.

For most of the children, they say when they are sick they still have to attend school because their parents have to go to work.

The Director of the Health Management Centre for the Global Care Hospital, Wei Changhong says that while generally most of the migrant children are healthy, there are some common problems she has seen in the recent health check ups for the children:

"According to my experience, one common problem is about nutrition. The other is about development, such as whether their bones are healthy enough and whether they are tall enough. We use instruments, such as the weighing-machine to do a comprehensive assessment for children, and then we can see their health conditions".

And while there are still many more migrant children on the list to receive health care check ups in the coming year, Helen says that the MCF in collaboration with the support of the Australian Chamber of Commerce and the Global Care Hospital hundreds of more children will receive free health care check ups in the coming year.

For CRI, I'm Simone Cote.


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