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First SOS Center Opens in Beijing

April 2, 1988

BEIJING (AP) _ China’s first SOS Center, part of an international network of facilities to provide medical services for foreign tourists and residents, opened in Beijing Friday.

Claude Giroux, founder and chairman of International SOS Co., and officials from the Public Health Ministry attended opening ceremonies at the Beijing Emergency Medical Center, the official Xinhua News Agency said.

The center will provide medical service to foreigners in the Chinese capital and, when necessary, will help them return to their countries for further medical attention.

International SOS Co. covers all medical and travel expenses for members. Others can pay for SOS services with individual medical insurance programs.

The report said the company also plans to set up centers in Canton, Shanghai, Chengdu and Xian to form a medical and transfer network in the country.

The company is to provide the Beijing Emergency Medical Center with $32,000 in telecommunications and medical equipment and train 40 Chinese doctors in China and abroad.

International SOS Co., founded in 1974, has 22 regional service centers and more than 10 million members, the report said.

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