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每日新闻播报(October 27)

chinadaily.com.cn 2020-10-27 16:43

A doctor provides free consultations in Kongpo'gyada county, Nyingchi, Tibet autonomous region. [Photo/China Daily]

>Rare disease treatment improves
Rare disease drugs account for over half the first two batches of drugs eligible for a fast approval track targeting medications already approved overseas and in urgent need for Chinese patients, deputy director of the National Medical Products Administration Chen Shifei said on Saturday. "Compilation of the third and latest batch is coming to a close and is expected to be published soon," Chen said during the opening ceremony for the 2020 China Conference on Rare Diseases held in Beijing.
Ma Xiaowei, minister of the National Health Commission, said it is estimated there are about 20 million rare disease patients in China.
The commission has released the country's first directory on rare diseases, set up a national cooperation network in diagnosis and treatment and promoted the use of a direct-reporting system, he said.
However, he also noted China still faces a shortage of healthcare services and drugs available to rare disease patients, and weak capability in creating innovative drugs. To solve these problems, more efforts will be devoted to advancing a hierarchical medical system, strengthening drug supplies and deepening reform in the healthcare sector, Ma said.


>New drivers get green light
China will allow citizens over 70 to apply for driver’s licenses, as long as their health meets the requirements for safe driving, the Ministry of Public Security announced Thursday.
From Nov 20, citizens over 70 will be allowed to apply for driving licenses for compact cars, compact automatic transmission cars and mopeds, the ministry said at a press conference.
Applicants are required to pass assessments on their memory, judgment and reaction time, as well as having annual health check-ups and submitting the results, the ministry said.
The minimum age requirement for a driver's license for a large coach will be reduced from 26 to 22, and that of a driver's license for a towing vehicle from 24 to 22. The upper age limit for a driver's license for large or medium-sized passenger cars and trucks will be raised from 50 to 60.
License applicants will be able to have checkups in nearby medical institutions, including township hospitals, community health service centers and physical examination centers.
Excluding minivans, non-commercial cars with seven to nine seats that have been in operation for more than six years but less than 10 will no longer need to pass an annual inspection. Instead, they will now be inspected once every two years.

An artist's impression showing one of three zero-emission concept aircraft known as ZEROe [Photo/Airbus]

>Hydrogen-powered planes
Zero-emission large passenger aircraft powered by hydrogen will be technically feasible in five years, according to Airbus, but will not enter service for at least a decade as the price of fuel needs to drop.
The prediction came from Glenn Llewellyn, vice-president of zero-emissions technology at the pan-European plane-maker.
He said while Airbus planned to demonstrate hydrogen-powered aircraft in 2025, “over the next 10 years, hydrogen won’t be more economical than the fossil fuel equivalent”.
A few days before, Airbus unveiled a series of design proposals for hydrogen-driven aircraft, including a “blended wing” concept that provides greater storage capacity.
This design could be key to hydrogen-powered aircraft, as the fuel is less energy dense than conventional fuel and so requires more space to match the performance of existing airplanes.

A man snorkels in an area called the "Coral Gardens" near Lady Elliot Island, on the Great Barrier Reef, northeast of Bundaberg town in Queensland, Australia, June 11, 2015. [Photo/Agencies]

>Coral reefs suffer decline
Australia's Great Barrier Reef has lost more than half of its coral since 1995 due to warmer seas driven by climate change, a study has found.
Scientists found all types of coral had suffered a decline across the world's largest reef system.
The steepest falls came after mass bleaching events in 2016 and 2017. More mass bleaching occurred this year.
Last year, the Australian government's official agency on the reef confirmed human-driven warming remained the biggest threat to the reef's long-term survival.
Stretching over 2,300 kilometers, the reef was designated a World Heritage site in 1981 for its "enormous scientific and intrinsic importance".
But in the past decade in particular, it has been vastly damaged by warmer seas which have killed off coral, dispersed other sea life and sped up growth of algae and other contaminants.
Global temperatures have already risen by about 1 C since pre-industrial times.
The UN has warned that if that rise reaches 1.5 C, 90 percent of the world's coral will be wiped out.

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