On April 22, on the playground of Chushur County Primary School in Lhasa, Tibet Autonomous Region, more than 600 students stood in an orderly line, waiting for doctors from the "Heart Blessing Project" team of the Second Affiliated Hospital of Nanjing Medical University to check their health, which started a 5-day comprehensive health screening for students.
It is reported that congenital heart disease has seriously endangered the physical and mental health of children. Due to the geographical and climatic conditions such as plateau hypoxia, Tibet is a high-incidence area of congenital heart disease in China. What’s worse, due to the relatively backward medical conditions, many children with the disease cannot be diagnosed and treated timely.
"Congenital heart disease is formed during the fetal period. Some children can heal on their own after birth, but there is no way to prevent it. Due to the environmental factors such as high altitude, low oxygen content and low pressure in Tibet, the incidence rate of the disease is higher than that in the plains. Shao Jun, Deputy Chief Physician of the Cardiovascular Disease Center of the Second Affiliated Hospital of Nanjing Medical University said. "We perform cardiac auscultation for each child, and children who have problems will undergo further echocardiography. In our plan, if diagnosed, the children would go to Nanjing for further treatment. We hope that through such screening, children with the disease can be early detected and treated.”
"Today, the medical aid team to Tibet came to our school to do the screening. On behalf of the teachers and students, I would like to express our gratitude to them. For us, we would continue to pay more attention to the children's physical and mental health in future work," said Chilai Gyaltsen, the principal of Chushur County Primary School.
Apart from the Chushur County Primary School, the team also conducted the screening at Chushur County Middle School and ChushurCounty Caina Township Primary School, which all sit more than 3,800 kilometers away from Nanjing with an average altitude of more than 3,500 meters.
It is reported that the Jiangsu "Heart Blessing Project" came to Tibet in 2019, and carried out a series of scientific popularization, screening and treatment work. According to the relevant person in charge, starting from April 23, the team also conducted congenital heart disease screening for primary and secondary school students in Linzhou County, Dagze District, Damshung County, and Nyimu County.