Wenzhou Medical University debuts as a UNAI member

On 5 May 2017 at United Nations Headquarters in New York, the United Nations Academic Impact welcomed one of its newest members—Wenzhou Medical University (WMU)—as it took part in a discussion on China’s medical care and medical education. The United Nations Chinese Language Programme organized the discussion.

Dr. Lu Fan, President of WMU, introduced the University’s distinctive approach in educating qualified resident doctors and enticing primary care physicians to stay in community health service centres.

“We are the largest healthcare service provider in our region, with 19 affiliated hospitals spread across Zhejiang province that render medical services to a population of over 20 million,” explained Dr. Lu. “We first introduced the ‘5+3’ programme to educate qualified resident doctors. Now we are developing a general physician programme with the government to improve China’s primary healthcare.”

The “5+3” programme involves 5-year clinical rotations and medical skills training followed by 3-year residency training to establish eligibility to take the National Medical Licensing Examination.

WMU’s general physical programme, on the other hand, admits students from areas where primary care physicians are needed. Local governments fund the students’ tuition, while the students are obligated to return to their hometown to serve the local community for 5 to 6 years.

When asked about why WMU joined UNAI, Dr. Lu stated: “We hope that through our UNAI membership our students will be able to have more opportunities to practice medicine aboard, receive global citizenship training and become doctors with a global mindset.”

In the past decades, Wenzhou Medical University has established partnerships with more than 100 universities and institutions all over the world in scholar and student exchanges, joint education programmes and joint research projects. Two Confucius Institutes are co-funded by WMU with Burapha University in Thailand and SUNY College of Optometry in the United States.