Proposal to help sick Tin Shui Wai residents Chronically ill patients in Tin Shui Wai may be subsidised to visit private clinics up to 10 times a year under a pilot project to be launched next year by the government. Secretary for Food and Health York Chow Yat-ngok said it was hoped the scheme would strengthen collaboration between the public and private sector. Dr Chow said that as healthy people usually visited doctors three or four times a year, 10 subsidised visits a year to private clinics should be adequate for chronically ill patients. Under the proposal, outlined by Chief Executive Donald Tsang Yam-kuen in his policy address, the Hospital Authority would select a group of patients from Tin Shui Wai's general outpatient clinic for the pilot scheme. The patients would pay HK$45 per visit to private doctors in the district, including drugs - the same fee charged at public clinics. Six regular consultations a year are proposed for those with chronic diseases, with four unexpected visits for occasional illnesses such as flu and skin allergies. An authority spokeswoman said the details of the project were still being discussed with private doctors in Tin Shui Wai. Medical Association president Choi Kin said subsidising 10 visits a year was acceptable, but some doctors were worried about the constraints on them, such as the choice of drugs to prescribe. Meanwhile, Secretary for Labour and Welfare Matthew Cheung Kin-chung said the government would provide more retraining courses for Tin Shui Wai residents, especially women and new immigrants. He said some of the 3,000 three-year employment opportunities promised by Mr Tsang in the policy address for people aged 15 to 29 would be allocated for residents in the district. The positions, which will be offered from April, will be created in partnership with non-governmental organisations. 'We are determined to help Tin Shui Wai residents. We hope they can give us some time for those measures,' Mr Cheung said at the annual meeting of the charity International Social Service. Tin Shui Wai housewife Ng Yuet-mui, 41, told Mr Cheung that life in the district was not so bad. The mother of four, whose husband is unemployed, has lived in the district for 14 years. 'I would still choose to live in Tin Shui Wai even if I was given a choice to move out. I am fond of the green environment here and transportation is convenient,' she said.