Ministry of Health launches Health TV

Updated: 2012-08-06 21:55

By Shan Juan (

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China's top health authority has launched a TV channel, China Health Television, to promote health education and disease prevention.

The new channel so far has reached more than 200 million people in 70 cities on the mainland and is expected to cover rural areas soon, Health Minister Chen Zhu said at CHTV's launch on Monday.

"The channel will promote a healthy lifestyle and behavior among the Chinese public, who have a growing demand for keeping healthy and fit today. The knowledge has to be impartial and scientifically correct," Chen said.

He said the current health-promotion materials and TV programs on the mainland need to be further regulated as some are motivated purely by commercial interests.

A 2009 survey held by the Chinese Health Education Center of the Ministry of Health has found that the health awareness among Chinese people remains poor.

Only 18.7 percent of those surveyed knew how to read a drug description properly, and less than 3 percent had any idea what kind of diseases that flies, mosquitoes, rats and cockroaches can spread, it showed.

Mao Qun'an, who heads the center, said the launch of the channel would help enhance public-health awareness.

"A grasp of health-related knowledge will in turn help people better protect themselves against diseases and improve the general health of the nation," he said.

Chen echoed and said: "So the channel is also under the ongoing medical reform, which aims to achieve universal healthcare for all and enhance the people's health condition."

"Health education is the best ‘vaccine' for diseases," Mao said.

More than 95 percent of mainland Chinese citizens are covered by public health insurance.