Chinese Medical Teams: Knowledge Transfer in Ethiopia and Malawi

Image: Flickr, Asian Development Bank
Image: Flickr, Asian Development Bank

The Chinese medical team Health Aid Model has unique potential to significantly improve health care provision, patient outcomes, and health systems throughout Africa.

The addition of approximately 16 Chinese specialists per team provides additional human resources to understaffed hospitals, as well as opportunities for knowledge transfer to African medical staff. Chinese medical teams (CMTs) are the cornerstone of Chinese health aid in Africa, deployed in over 50 countries on the continent and in all African countries that maintain official diplomatic ties with China. While CMTs serve primarily as medical practitioners, for decades Chinese government rhetoric has also cited capacity building and knowledge transfer as CMTs’ core functions. This rhetoric is reflected in the official Chinese Medical Team Memoranda of Understanding, where teaching, mentoring, and training are listed as core program components.

1 Jan 2020