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Professor Weirong Chen in ZOC Awarded South Guangdong Role Model

Source: Zhongshan Ophthalmic Center of Sun Yat-sen University

Edited by: Liu Nian


On September 6, Publicity Department of CPC Guangdong Provincial Party Committee (GPPC) announced the sixth group of South Guangdong Role Models in Guangdong Radio and Television Station. Three comrades, including Weirong Chen, Yingying Fei and Zhusheng Pan, won this honor. Over 180 people attended the announcement ceremony, such as Haixiong Shen, Standing Member and Minister of Publicity Department of GPCC; Zuoyi Gu, Deputy Minister of Publicity Department of GPPC and Director of Civilization Office of Guangdong Province; Yinyan Liu, Deputy Director of Health Department of Guangdong Province (HDGP); Minbin Yu, Standing Member of Sun Yat-sen University (SYSU) CPC Committee and Vice President of SYSU, relevant comrades from provincial departments and departments in Shenzhen and Foshan, people’s representatives from all walks of life, as well as the relatives, friends and colleges of the Role Models.


Haixiong Shen, Standing Member and Minister of Publicity Department of GPCC, presented certificates of honor of “South Guangdong Role Model” to Weirong Chen, Yingying Fei and Zhusheng Pan. During the ceremony, organizers played short videos, invited people who had witnessed the winners’ achievements to give speeches, interviewed the winners and gave an award presentation speech, all vividly demonstrating their outstanding contributions.


Weirong Chen is a Chief Physician, professor, doctoral supervisor, and the Deputy Director of Eye Hospital of ZOC, SYSU. She has been dedicated to the treatment, education and scientific research related to ophthalmology. With excellent medical skills and sincere care for patients, she rises to challenges, works in earnest and dares to be a pioneer. Thanks to her professional ethics and innovative awareness, she has won much respect from patients and other doctors, and set an example of a harmonious doctor-patient relationship in South Guangdong.

Chen’s courage is all the more precious especially in the hardship. There is a strong public concern in China over the difficulty and high cost of getting medical treatment, which is also a challenge for the national healthcare reform. In order to tackle this problem, Professor Chen has constantly innovated technology and service. She built the first Home of Pediatric Cataract Patients in China, providing a standard treatment platform for children with congenital cataract. This Home has also been included in International Clinical and Translational Research Center, promoting the development of domestic pediatric ophthalmology. Besides, she is the first to lead the whole department to carry out open appointments and online appointments in China. When China was flooded with hospital “scalpers”, she took the lead in implementing unlimited cataract appointments and being available around the clock for home visits and surgeries to prevent “scalpers” as well as effectively mitigate difficulty of getting medical treatment and hospitalization. She led cataract specialists to set up the first “one-day ward” in the hospital, which means that it only takes patients one day to make an appointment, be examined, have a surgery and be discharged. This measure can reduce patients’ treatment cost and make the best of limited high-quality medical resources, serving as a significant example in domestic healthcare reform. After rolling out a series of reform systems, Cataract Center manages an annual workload of over 80,000 outpatient visits and more than 20,000 surgeries, becoming the cataract department with most outpatients, inpatients and surgeries as well as the fastest bed turnover rate in China and even around the world.

Under the leadership of Professor Chen, ZOC Cataract Center was awarded Pioneer Worker of Guangdong Province in 2011 and National Pioneer Worker granted by All-China Federation of Trade Unions in 2012, becoming the only department with this honor in Guangdong healthcare system. In 2015, it was also honored as “Women’s Civilization Post” in Guangdong and “Women’s Civilization Model Post” in Guangzhou.

Responding to the call of our country, Chen takes her responsibility to push forward the healthcare reform. As the old saying goes, “Make a mind for Heaven and Earth; set up the Tao for human beings.” In the recent two years, the healthcare reform has been focusing on improving the service provided by community-level medical and healthcare facilities and building a level-based diagnosis and treatment system. Apart from implementing the reform tasks of National Health and Family Planning in level-based diagnosis and treatment system, Professor Chen also carried out decisions and arrangements of GPPC and People’s Government of Guangdong Province in building Guangdong as a province with strong healthcare industry, as well as job requirements of Action Plan on Strengthening Foundation and Creating Excellence of Healthcare. She proposed to establish the first domestic Intractable Ophthalmologic Diseases Consultation and Referral Center, gathering over 30 top experts in ZOC. This center forms a healthcare platform with various specialists, high quality and excellent service, providing authoritative, scientific and convenient one-stop medical services for all patients with intractable eye diseases in China to maximally meet the treatment need. In 2016, Professor Chen actively promoted and launched the Capacity Building Project of County-level People’s Hospitals in Guangdong Province, under the leadership of HDGP and other related departments. With innovative thinking of “Internet + Healthcare”, she has trained grass-roots ophthalmologists and offered triage and consultation to patients from far away, giving full play to the technological innovation of ZOC and its leading role in cultivating talents. Efforts will be made to ensure that in 2018, the county-level outpatient rate of common ophthalmologic diseases will research 90%, basically realizing the objective that “serious illness can be treated inside a county”. Yufei Duan, Director of HDGP and Secretary of Leading Party Members’ Group, has appraised that this project fully embodies strong senses of politics, responsibility and whole-hearted service to the people, pushing the medical pattern and level of ophthalmology in Guangdong Province to a new stage as well as setting up an example for the national healthcare system reform.

By providing medical assistance for target patients in poverty and free treatment for ordinary people, Professor Chen shoulders her responsibility to bring people benefits. Medical services in poverty-stricken areas are weak spots for the whole national public service system. In order to reduce the medical burden of the poor, Chen volunteered to go to countryside as an organizer and participant of a large-scale free treatment project for patients with cataract. She played an active role in assisting Dongyuan County in becoming a “County without Cataract” and carried out 1500 free surgeries for patients with cataract. Since 2012, she has promoted and volunteered to undertake the project of Vision Care and Brightness: Vision Restoration of Poor Cataract Patients in Guangzhou. Over the past four years, together with her colleagues, she insisted on offering citizens free treatment at appointed parks on every Friday. Thus, she has carried out 3,649 high-quality cataract surgeries for poor patients in Guangzhou, reducing over 6.48 million yuan medical cost. Additionally, she has led her team to carry out cataract surgery for poor patients in Xinjiang Province, Yunnan Province and other poor remote areas.

Professor Chen has also participated in the Chinese medical aid project abroad, which is “Sending Medical Services to Islands”. In response to national medical diplomatic policies and the new practice of “Sending Medical Services to Islands” in Guangdong Province, she made contributions to the national strategic concept of Belt and Road. In 2013 and 2015, she went to six remote island countries in the South Pacific for four times, such as Vanuatu and Fiji. After getting over many difficulties, like outdated medical facilities and language obstacles, she carried out free surgeries for local people with cataract. As the best doctor in Guangdong Province, she has effectively formed an international image of peaceful diplomacy for our country, created profound friendship between Chinese and foreign people, and was met as well as appreciated by many heads of state in those island countries. Chunhua Hu, Member of Political Bureau of CPC Central Committee and Secretary of GPPC, also highly praised her medical work and efforts for national medical diplomacy. Besides that, Professor Chen was honored as Women’s Role Model of SYSU, Excellent Communist Party Member of SYSU, March 8th Red-Banner Pacesetters in Guangdong Province and Guangzhou Good Citizen, embodying the contemporary spirit of doctors in Guangdong Province, which is “Treasuring Life, Advocating Science, Willing to Contribute and Forging Ahead with Solidarity”, as well as representing that party members should “be loyal to the Party and clean personally, dare to assume responsibilities and serve the public”. As a major excellent role model emerging from Party Mass Line Education and Practice Movement, “Three Stricts and Three Earnests” special education and “Two Learn One to Do” learning education carried out by Health Department of Guangdong Province, she also sets an outstanding example for party members and cadres from Guangdong Province in practicing the Party’s aim and Core Socialist Values.