China Medical University
Promotion of Taiwan’s National Insurance Health and Long-Term Care System-International Student Exchange Program (ISEP), China Medical University.
- China Medical University offers all English general education courses with Taiwan humanistic features, including Taiwan Political and Economic Development, Oriental Diet Culture and Exercise, Taiwan’s National Health Insurance, Understanding Taiwan’s History through Historic Sites, Volunteer Service and Taiwan Society, Tai Chi, the Common Infectious Diseases in Taiwan, the Reference and Application of Traditional Chinese Medicine and Chinese Herbal Medicine etc. We promote Taiwan culture and characteristics to American students through these courses and service-learning, combined with field trips.
- Through this program, CMU students and the foreign students interact with each other and take classes together on a one-on-one or one-on-two basis. Students share their academic viewpoints and ideas in classes, and Taiwan students showed foreign students around to experience life in Taiwan after classes. Students get along daily and experience local culture, history and delicious food together. In this way, Taiwanese students and foreign students adequately exchange the academic thoughts, culture and languages.
- The exchange student summer program based on the agreements with overseas universities is one of the effective strategies to broaden students’ horizons in a short time. Through this program, Taiwanese students not only make foreign friends and improve their spoken English proficiency, but also experience exotic cultures and viewpoints, which widen their horizons.
Under the coordination by Professor Ted T. L. Chen, who used to be a professor at Tulane University, now is the Honorary Chair Professor at the Department of International Master Program for Public Health, CMU, and the Permanent Honorary Secretary-general at the Asia Pacific Association for the Control of Tobacco, APACT, the International Students Exchange Program (ISEP) between China Medical University and Tulane University has been taking places for eight years since 2012. Every year, the students from both sides started the adventured prelude of this program at the Taoyuan International Airport with anxiety, tension, excitement and expectation. It always ends with joy, sad feeling for separation, touching moments and gratitude, for such a good memories and friendship may occur only once in lifetime. After the retirement of Professor Chen, Professor David Seal, who is from the Department of Global Community Health and Behavior Sciences at Tulane University, continues to lead their international students participating in the CMU ISEP which is held between May and June every year.
The mutual exchange between China Medical University and California State University, Long Beach, was initiated by Professor Chiu-Ying Chen, who was the Chair of the Department of Public Health at CMU and Dr. Erlyana, now is the Chair of the Department of Health Care Administration, CSULB. Dr. Erlyana e-mailed and told CMU that she hoped lead 20 students coming to Taiwan for learning Taiwan’s healthcare and Taiwan’s NHI financial system, especially about how Taiwan’s medical system cooperates with the reform of Taiwan’s NHI, the implementation of long-term health care and fund raising. During that time, President Obama was pushing very hard for the Health Care Reform in the U.S., Dr. Erlyana expressed that not only their students but her colleagues and she also want to learn and exchange the viewpoints of long-term health care and insurance planning from both countries.
CMU and CSULB showed the cooperative sincerity to each other followed by Dr. Erlyana’s visit to China Medical University, and discussed the courses contents and the correspondence back and forth with Dr. Tony Sinay, who was the Chair of the Department at CSULB. Finally, after one year, the bilateral cooperative agreement was signed by Dean Peng-Jy Tsai, College of Public Health, CMU, and Dr. Kenneth Millar, Dean of the College of Public Health, CSULB. CMU faculty elaborately designed the program before the start of the program, including airport pick-up, accommodation arrangement, inviting professors who are experts in the related fields, arranging the visit to institutions, and recruiting enthusiastic CMU students to participate in this program. After more than four months of planning, the original sketch of this program was completed into an exciting program full with learning and interacting activities.
As the success of Taiwan NHI is well-known internationally, many teachers and students from different countries are very interested in understanding the implementation and effects of Taiwan’s NHI. To facilitate the interaction between international students and Taiwanese students, and to provide assistance to international students, the program assigns each international student with one or two CMU student buddy. They take classes and do activities on the one-on-one or one-on-two basis. This unique arrangement not only increases the learning opportunities for CMU students to have close contact with international students, but also helps international students quickly learn and appreciate Taiwan’s culture.
CMU provide all English courses during the two-week program such as Taiwan NHI payment system, the Hospital Management and Medical Care System in Taiwan. We also introduce to international teachers, international students and Taiwan students the actual operation of Taiwan’s NHI system, and the efforts that Taiwan government put for disease control and promote public health through arranging the visit of NHI Administration, Taiwan Centers for Disease Control and the Department of Health, Taipei City Government.
Moreover, we arrange the visit of Center of Health Evaluation and Promotion in CMU Hospital, the featured medicine in Chang Bing Show Chwan Memorial Hospital, and the Integrated Health Screening program which is a one-stop multiple screening by Changhua City Government. All the international students and Taiwan students benefit a lot from these courses and visits.
The study buddies over the past years from CMU and AU gave their feedbacks：
“The first night in Taipei when deciding the study buddies, I was so glad that Oko, who is a foreign student from Asia University, and I were in a team to accompany our mutual partner Gerline. I first mistook that Oko is a Japanese. Actually she is from Mongolia after she introduced herself…”
“My study buddies are Catherine and Jacky, they’re coming from California State University, Long Beach. They are so amazed by the Integrated Health Screening program, which has been lasting for 11 years, held by Changhua City Government. It is surprising that the local government can provide such a health examination to promote the county citizens’ welfare…”
“My study buddy told me he was so interested in Taiwan’s NHI. The NHI system now covers 99.6% of Taiwan’s population, while it is not single-payer system in the U.S. and the population covered by insurance is quite low…”
“During the past two weeks, I felt lucky that my English ability got improved. Dr. Seal told me that I can always have chance to hang out with Taiwanese friends around me, but there’s maybe only one chance to build this precious friendship with international students in my lifetime. “
Undoubtedly, the exchange student summer program based on the agreements with overseas universities is one of the most effective strategies to broaden students’ horizons in a short time. Taiwanese students can not only make friends with foreign students and enhance their spoken English proficiency, but also experience exotic cultures and viewpoints, which widen their horizons. The seeds of globalization we sow in the hearts of students one day will surely blossom and bear fruit。