My name is Maike Jäger; I’m a 22 years old medicine student from Frankfurt, Germany. In August 2016 I participated in an exchange program of the German Chinese Society for Medicine and got the chance to experience the work life in Tongji hospital in Wuhan as part of a four weeks’ medical internship.
The first two weeks I worked at the general gynaecology ward. I was allowed to view all different kind of gynaecological operations and interventions. One of the many highlights was a caesarean section with drillings. I could also take part in the everyday work of the doctors, could assist with wound dressings and examinations. I learned a lot about gynaecological surgery and was impressed by the great team work and positive atmosphere in the operating room. It was quite instructive for me to experience a different way of clinical work and problem solving strategies. All the doctors and especially my English and partly German speaking supervisors took great effort in explaining the processes and medical procedures to me. I felt quite welcomed and enjoyed this time a lot.
The last two weeks I got the chance to experience and learn about Chinese Traditional Medicine (TCM). Every morning other exchange students and me got a little lecture and afterwards patients, treated with TCM methods, were presented to us. Some days we were allowed to follow the ward round or we could try and practice TCM techniques with the lecturer. I found it quite interesting how TCM is part of many therapies, as an adjuvant in In Vtro Fertilisation therapy, as party of neurological rehabilitation or general prevention measures. The lecturers and supervisors always gave their best to explain the complex systems and relations of TCM to us especially focusing on our different cultural background.
Looking back to theses four weeks it was an absolutely unique and special experience for me. Apart from many positive and interesting impressions I got in Tongji hospital I have learned a lot about Chinese culture and people. Wuhan is a wonderful, vibrant and fascinating city; I’m glad that I had such a long time to explore it.
Many thanks to the doctors, lecturers, to the Chinese medical students, to my supervisors and finally to the German Chinese Society for Medicine!