Taipei: A delegation of 36 Taiwanese doctors, nurses, and interns from the Taiwan Root Medical Peace Corps paid a visit to Dharamshala for one week, during which they provided medical services to hundreds of exiled Tibetans and met the Tibetan spiritual leader, His Holiness the Dalai Lama.
Liu Qi Qun, the head of the group, said, "The week-long activities concluded yesterday. After a 12 hour bus ride from Dharamshala, we arrived in New Delhi this morning (2 August). This afternoon, we were invited by Weng Wen Qi, the Republic of China’s ambassador in India, for dinner at his official residence in honor of our work and to enjoy a rich diet after a long absence."
The Taiwanese medical team paid their 2009 visit to Dharamsala during the monsoon season, and in this hostile climate many residents hesitated to come out to the clinic. However, Liu suggests that the lower turnout could also signify an increase in Tibetans’ good health. He states that, "According to the statistical records, the clinic accepted 2, 690. This is much lower in previous years…and shows that the health status of Tibetans has improved a lot over the years."
Liu quoted senior officials of the Tibetan government-in-exile, as saying that when the medical team arrived in Dharamshala last week, the Dalai Lama was all set to depart for Europe, but set aside time for the Taiwan Root Medical Corps when he heard of their arrival. His Holiness greeted the doctors in a special meeting and thanked them for their medical contributions to the Tibetan refugees.
Dr. Liu explains that the medical delegation consisted of doctors from six specialties, five dentists, three nurses, an examiner, pharmacists, and interns. He said that by observing, diagnosing, and meeting the needs of the impoverished residents of rural India, the Medical core made a rare contribution to this community, and they felt that it was a uniquely rewarding experience.
The Taiwan Root Medical Corps first visited Dharamshala in 2000, and since then the group has carried out routine clinic services in India every year, to help alleviate the lack of medical resources and health knowledge afflicting Tibetan communities in India. Over the years, they have arranged medical services and health education to key Tibetan areas including Dharamshala, the northern part of Sikkim, and the northeastern region of Darjeeling.
The medical team will fly from New Delhi as non-stop to Taipei this afternoon, but they plan to return to India next year. "Taiwan Root Medical Corp will follow their plan to visit other Indian areas in need of medical assistance and activities," stated Liu.