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Commentary: Guarding women's health in Xinjiang: A Uygur PhD gynecologist's success goes beyond her own story
By:People's Daily Online
update:November 15,2023

Photo taken on November 1, 2023 shows Maynur Niyaz (C) analysis a patient's medical image with her team. (Photo by Qin Meihua)
Nov.15, 2023 -- Maynur Niyaz is a household name across Xinjiang in northwestern China. A Uygur gynecologist from the People’s Hospital of Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, Maynur has won widespread acclaim and respect for her dedication to patients and pioneering work in screening cervical cancer among women particularly those in rural areas in southern Xinjiang.
Throughout her school years and early career life, she relentlessly chased her dream with light in heart, demonstrating that there is no limit to what a determined mind can do.
Like a dazzling light, she illuminates the life of patients and navigates them the darkest passage of their lives. She initiated large-scale cervical cancer screening programs in rural areas, and built the first defending line for women’s health.
Now retired, Maynur continues to shine. She shares her expertise and experience and inspires the younger generation to build successful careers of their own, together weaving an ever-expanding protective web for women’s health.
From her, we see the strengths of perseverance and hardworking. Maynur never rested on her laurels nor stopped pursuing excellence no matter how challenging and demanding it was. As a graduate of a vocational school for nurses, she managed to attend a prestigious university. A busy gynecologist, she squeezed time and energy to obtain a PhD degree. Despite being in her 70s, she continues honing her knowledge of medicine.
Driving the relentless pursuit is her implicit faith in modern civilization and science. She knows that a cure to diseases can only come from progress of science and expansion of knowledge. Then, she never stops in pushing the boundaries.
Born in 1953, Maynur grew up in tandem with the development of the People’s Republic of China. Behind her personal growth is the constant attention and inputs China has been placing in developing its border areas and underdeveloped regions.
Today, all children in rural areas across Xinjiang are offered with free three-year pre-school education. Those in southern Xinjiang have access to free education from kindergarten to senior high school. The region’s gross enrolment ratio in senior high schools stands at 98.87 percent.
Government spending on education in Xinjiang reached 90.8 billion yuan ($12.5 billion) in 2020, accounting for 17 percent of the total expenditure of the regional government. A complete funding system for students has been established, ensuring every able student in need can get financial support until they complete their graduate programs.
It has been such efforts that makes sure Maynur and people like her have a smooth journey in chasing their dreams.
Along with the dedication of medical workers like Maynur, China and its Xinjiang region are delivering more targeted policies and generous support to defend people’s health. Xinjiang offers free health checks to all residents and free screening for cervical and breast cancers to women aged 35 to 64.
Since 2012, the central government has allocated more than 57.4 billion yuan to improve medical services in the region. It now ensures medical services are accessible to every village across Xinjiang.
Maynur emerges as a dazzling beam of light thanks to her personal hardworking, but the meaning of her success goes beyond an individual level. In a journey where both individuals and the nation work hard with perseverance for a high aim, a brilliant feat is foreseeable.
By: Qian Yongwen, Jie Wenjin and Song Duer
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