A glimpse into the countryside’s battle against COVID

BEIJING: Since 2017, 55-year-old Li Ruiying has been the only doctor at the clinic in Erdaohe Village in northern suburban Beijing, where she has been stationed since 1999. The clinic is like a beacon for villagers with Li ready to provide medication and treatment at any time.
Erdaohe is in Taishitun Town, Miyun District. According to Li, a native of Miyun, the village is home to around 300 residents, many of whom are seniors. Unlike doctors in hospitals who hone their craft in specific disciplines, Li treats villagers who come in with all sorts of minor ailments.
In the previous two years, the clinic usually received about a dozen people per day, Li said. Recently, she noticed a rise in patient numbers.
“The number of people who contract COVID-19 has increased. Right now, we’re seeing nearly 40 people coming in to get medication or an intravenous drip every day,” Li told Beijing Review on January 6.
A tsunami of Omicron infections swept across Beijing last December, and the storm has now touched down in its rural areas. COVID-19 may have already infected more than 80 percent of Beijing’s over 20 million residents, Zeng Guang, former chief epidemiologist of the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention, told news portal iFeng.com on December 29, 2022. Infections have surged across China after Chinese authorities issued 10 new measures to optimize the country’s COVID-19 response early last December, given the pathogenicity of the Omicron variant has weakened compared with the original strain of the coronavirus and its other variations.
But the rapidly growing number of infected people has posed challenges to medical services, especially in rural areas with inadequate medical resources.
To help villagers cope with COVID-19, Li began to dispense, and give instructions on the use of, fever medication and painkillers like ibuprofen and paracetamol starting from late December 2022, with the support from the local government and villagers’ committee, China’s primary mass organization of self-management consisting of local villagers, who manage local affairs.
As the virus continues to spread, the Chinese Government has focused on guaranteeing sufficient medication supplies and treatment options for senior residents in rural and remote areas.
–The Daily Mail-Beijing review news exchange item