On April 7, 2023, an investigation team composed of the Maternal and Child Health Division of the Gansu Provincial Health Commission, the Children’s Medical Foundation, the Department of Neonatology at the Children’s Hospital of Fudan University, and the Neonatology Department of the Gansu Provincial Maternal and Children Health Hospital, visited the cities of Longnan, Tianshui, Pingliang, and Qingyang in Gansu Province to conduct a benchmark study for the “Comprehensive Neonatal Healthcare Program” (CNHP).

The investigation revealed that several hospitals lacked specialized equipment and transport systems for neonatal transfer, greatly impeding the development of local neonatal healthcare. During the investigation, doctors from Qingyang People’s Hospital stated that due to the impact of the COVID-19, opportunities for medical staff to pursue further education and training had decreased, making it challenging for them to develop their newly established Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU). After the COVID-19 subsided, they would need to learn how to stabilize the patients and meet the transfer criteria, as well as provide effective care during transport to ensure the safe arrival of patients in the NICU ward for further treatment and care. This is an urgent issue that needs to be addressed.

Based on these findings, the Children’s Medical Foundation has decided to intervene in the project by providing personnel training, equipment donations, and optimizing the regional referral system for critically ill newborns, aiming to improve the treatment system and ensure that critically ill newborns in the region receive rapid and high-quality medical care. The expert team also conducted on-site inspections of the neonatology departments in various hospitals, listened to reports from the directors on the development of their departments, visited the NICU to understand the department’s operations, diagnostic and treatment capabilities, and critical care rescue capabilities.

Director Yun CAO engaged in in-depth discussions with the medical staff of the Neonatology Department at Longnan First People’s Hospital.

The expert team from the Children’s Hospital of Fudan University conducted on-site inspections and gathered information on the usage of equipment.

Over the next 3-4 years, the Children’s Medical Foundation, in collaboration with the Children’s Hospital of Fudan University, will support the development of neonatal treatment capabilities in six cities and prefectures in Gansu Province, contributing to the advancement of child healthcare in Gansu Province. We believe that through our efforts and support, the neonatal treatment capabilities in Gansu Province will be greatly enhanced, enabling more newborns to receive timely medical care and giving them a better chance to grow into healthy and happy children.