Chinese Medicine Development Committee discusses latest progress of various Chinese medicine development initiatives (with photos)

     The Chinese Medicine Development Committee (CMDC) held its 11th meeting which also marked the first meeting of its fifth-term today (September 16). The meeting was chaired by the Secretary for Food and Health (SFH), Professor Sophia Chan, and members had in-depth discussions and exchanges on the latest progress of various initiatives relating to the development of Chinese medicine (CM).
     Relevant government departments and organisations briefed the CMDC on various initiatives relating to the development of CM, including the preparation work for commissioning the Chinese Medicine Hospital (CMH), preparation work for the establishment of the Government Chinese Medicines Testing Institute (GCMTI), the latest progress of Government-subsidised CM services, participation of Chinese Medicine Clinics cum Training and Research Centres (CMCTRs) in combating COVID-19, as well as the latest progress of the Chinese Medicine Development Fund (CMDF).
     "Two flagship institutions that are the first CMH in Hong Kong and the GCMTI aiming to promote the development of CM will be commissioned in 2025, and the Government will continue to provide multi-faceted support to the development of the CM sector through the CMDF. Coupled with the staunch support to Hong Kong from the Central Government under the Construction Plan for the Chinese Medicine Highlands in the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area (2020-2025), the CM sector of Hong Kong is presented with unprecedented opportunities for further development. The Government will keep on working closely with the CM sector to join efforts in promoting the development of CM," said Professor Chan.
     The CMDC noted that the design and construction works of the CMH and the GCMTI were commenced in late June. The Food and Health Bureau (FHB) is also working out with the contractor of the service deed for operation, the Hong Kong Baptist University, on various preparation work for the commissioning, on top of continuous close communication with the stakeholders of the CM sector.
     Members were also briefed on the work progress in relation to the 18 CMCTRs, including the Government provision of an annual quota of around 620 000 for Government-subsidised out-patient CM services through the CMCTRs, and that the number of participating public hospitals in the Integrated Chinese-Western Medicine Programme had increased to eight. With the facilitation and support of the FHB, the Hospital Authority launched the Special CM Out-patient Programme and the Special CM Programme for COVID-19 In-patients for those infected with COVID-19, further allowing CM to give full play to its strength in the anti-epidemic treatment.
     The CMDC noted that the CMDF, since its launch in June 2019, has rolled out various funding schemes to support training, improvement of clinic facilities, enhancement of proprietary Chinese medicine (pCm) manufacturing quality and management systems, pCm registration, promotion of CM, applied studies and research. Around 3,000 funding applications have been approved so far. The FHB is conducting a review on the overall implementation of the CMDF, with a view to further enhancing the funding schemes and utilisation of resources, so as to support the CM sector in a more effective and targeted manner.
     Furthermore, the Chairman of the Chinese Medicines Industry Subcommittee (CMISC), Mr Tommy Li Ying-sang, and the Chairman of the Chinese Medicine Practice Subcommittee (CMPSC), Mr Chan Wing-kwong, reported relevant work progress of the two Subcommittees under the CMDC at today’s meeting. The CMISC and the CMPSC held meetings in April and August respectively.
     Established in 2013 and chaired by the SFH, the CMDC provides recommendations to the Government concerning the direction and long-term strategy of the future development of CM in Hong Kong with focus on four key areas, namely the development of CM services, personnel training and professional development, scientific research and development, and development of the CM drug industry (including CM drug testing).

Ends/Thursday, September 16, 2021
Issued at HKT 17:50