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CE opens new district health centre

Chief Executive Carrie Lam today officiated at the opening ceremony of the Sham Shui Po District Health Centre, the second government-subsidised district health centre (DHC) in Hong Kong.   Located at Mei Hei House of Shek Kip Mei Estate, the centre is operated by St James' Settlement and provides subsidised primary healthcare services for the public.   Speaking at the ceremony, Mrs Lam said she hopes that the commissioning of the centre would shift the emphasis of the present healthcare system and people's mindset from treatment-oriented to prevention-focused in order to tackle the challenges of the rapid ageing population.   The Chief Executive pointed out in her 2021 Policy Address that there is a pressing need to vigorously promote the development of primary healthcare services and foster medical-social collaboration.   She also raised the need to suggest a better appreciation of the collaboration of the entire medical team.   She said: "Through the active involvement of the non-governmental organisation operators, I anticipated that the DHC could utilise the local network and resources to proactively and flexibly provide district-based primary healthcare services according to the local needs and to achieve true medical-social collaboration from top to bottom."   Apart from the Sham Shui Po DHC, the DHC expresses in North District and Islands District also commenced services today.   Five other DHC expresses in Kwun Tong, Tai Po, Central & Western District, Eastern District and Sha Tin will start operation in phases in late October, while the DHCs in Wong Tai Sin, Tuen Mun, Southern District, Yuen Long and Tsuen Wan will provide services progressively next year.   Mrs Lam said she is delighted that the hardware to enhance the primary healthcare services has progressively materialised at the local level.   She noted that the current-term Government is committed to promoting primary healthcare and care in the community, adding that resources are provided to set up a prevention-focused healthcare system to ensure the sustainable development of Hong Kong's healthcare system in the long run.   At the opening ceremony, Secretary for Food & Health Prof Sophia Chan emphasised that the Food & Health Bureau is actively preparing to implement a pilot public-private partnership programme in the Sham Shui Po DHC.   Under the programme, subsidised healthcare services will be provided through medical practitioners in the local network to DHC members who are newly diagnosed with diabetes or hypertension with a view to enhancing the public's capability in chronic disease management, thus alleviating the pressure on the public healthcare system.   With a multi-disciplinary team comprising nurses, allied health professionals, pharmacists, social workers and support staff, the Sham Shui Po DHC provides primary healthcare services including health promotion, health assessment and screening, chronic disease management and community rehabilitation.   It has an assessment and interview area for nursing and medication counselling and health assessment, an activity area for conducting health education and chronic disease management programmes and a health resource corner for the promotion of public health initiatives.   In addition, innovative technology is applied in the centre's rehabilitation and exercise area as well as a training room equipped with an immersive exercise system to provide efficient chronic disease management and community rehabilitation services to its members.   To give full play to its role as a district primary healthcare hub, the centre will recruit medical and healthcare practitioners within or in adjacent districts, including family doctors and Chinese medicine practitioners, to form a multi-disciplinary network.   It will also co-ordinate with community partners providing healthcare services in the district and make referrals as necessary.
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