Sat, Mar 05, 2011 - Page 2 News List

Taiwan News Quick Take

Staff Writer, with CNA


Rescue team back from NZ

An urban search and rescue team returned yesterday after wrapping up a mission in New Zealand in the aftermath of a magnitude 6.3 earthquake that devastated the city of Christchurch on Tuesday. The 22-member team, which was assembled by the National Fire Agency, said they had followed Wellington’s instructions and searched 350 buildings in 21 districts, but did not find anyone trapped in the rubble or locate any dead bodies. The team members said their experience in New Zealand could be of help in undertaking future earthquake relief operations at home. A female Taiwanese student was among a number of foreign nationals who were reportedly trapped under the collapsed Canterbury TV building. So far, she has not been located.


Presbyopia a concern: poll

Middle-aged people are more worried about developing early presbyopia, or failing eyesight, than growing gray hair or developing wrinkles, a recent survey showed. Thirty percent of respondents — outpatients aged 35 to 54 who visited a local hospital for consultation on their deteriorating vision — said they experienced anxiety, depression, headaches and insomnia when their eyesight began to fail. Many expressed concern that wearing glasses would affect their appearance and make them look older, said Tom Yang (楊聰財), a psychiatrist at Cardinal Tien Hospital, which released the survey of 200 respondents. Some simply refused to wear glasses and 50 percent of the respondents said they also gave up reading, Yang said. Many ophthalmology outpatients also consulted psychiatrists as they were oversensitive about their health and very worried about showing the symptoms of premature aging, Yang said.


Bands warm up for Megaport

Two warm-up concerts for Kaohsiung’s biggest music festival, featuring dozens of underground bands, rocked fans both in the north and south of the country yesterday. The prelude shows to the Megaport Music Festival took place at Taipei’s Wall Live House and at the Wall Pier 2 in Kaohsiung. A total of 42 independent bands or artists from home and abroad, including British band 65daysofstatic and MUCC from Japan, will perform at the two-day festival that begins today. Wu Bai (伍佰) and China Blue are scheduled to perform in the final session tomorrow to close the event.


Donations pour in

A flood of donations has poured into various funds for people who cannot pay their National Health Insurance premiums, in the wake of last month’s charity auction by former Department of Health minister Yaung Chih-liang (楊志良), said Lai Li-wen (賴立文), a senior specialist at the Bureau of National Health Insurance (BNHI). From Feb. 13 to Feb. 19 — the week after Yaung’s briefcase was auctioned for NT$5 million (US$168,900) — the funds received 71 donations totaling NT$886,000, Lai said. The amount was seven times the weekly average of NT$110,000 recorded in January, Lai said. Before leaving office last month, Yaung put his five-year-old briefcase up for a charity auction on the Taiwan Yahoo Web site, where it was snapped up by Hon Hai Group chairman Terry Gou (郭台銘). Yaung donated all the proceeds from the sale, plus an additional NT$500,000 out of his own pocket, to the funds set up by the BNHI to help the disadvantaged pay their health insurance premiums.


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