BUDAPEST — Visiting Vice-Premier Liu Yandong attended the groundbreaking ceremony on June 18 for a new building of the Semmelweis University’s Faculty of Health Sciences in Budapest, the capital of Hungary.
The building will house the China-CEEC (Central and Eastern European Countries) Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) Center.
The Chinese official was here to attend the opening ceremony of the third health ministers’ forum between China and Central and Eastern European Countries (CEEC) scheduled for June 18 to 21 in Hungary.
“Traditional Chinese Medicine is a treasure of the Chinese nation, it does not only belong to China, but also to the world,” she said at the ceremony.
Chinese President Xi Jinping and Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban announced in May this year to establish a comprehensive strategic partnership between China and Hungary, she said, adding that the two governments proposed to deepen cooperation in the field of health, especially in Traditional Chinese Medicine.
She said that this opened up vast space for Chinese medicine cooperation. “It is gratifying to see that Hungary takes the lead in legislating and enacting rules for practicing Chinese medicine in Europe, recognizing and accepting Chinese medicine for national service,” Liu said.
“I hope that the two countries’ universities will create together a high level platform of Chinese medicine education cooperation to train more Chinese medicine experts in need,” she added.
She hoped that “the two countries’ medical experts will work together in close collaboration, and take complementary advantages of Chinese and Western medicine, to explore a new model of Chinese and Western medicine to overcome disease.”
“I hope that the Chinese medicine center will not only impart knowledge of Traditional Chinese Medicine, but also show the traditional Chinese culture and philosophical wisdom, and promote the cooperation in Traditional Chinese Medicine between China and Hungary to become a bright ‘business card’ to deepen the health cooperation between the two countries and to promote cultural exchanges between them,” she said.
State Secretary of the Hungarian Ministry of Human Capacities Bence Retvari also said at the ceremony “This step is not only an important cornerstone for the Hungarian education, but also for the Chinese-Hungarian medical cooperation,” adding “Traditional Chinese Medicine is going to play an important role in education, in research and also in healing.”
Liu Yandong listened to the introduction of Traditional Chinese Medicine educational cooperation between the Semmelweis University in Budapest and the Heilongjiang University of Chinese Medicine in Harbin in Northeast China, and the preparations of the Central and Eastern European Traditional Chinese Medical Education and Training Center to be built. She also visited the Traditional Chinese Medicine classrooms and observed the students’ clinical practice.
In 2010, the two universities signed a cooperation agreement for jointly starting a five-year TCM program in order to train Hungarian TCM professionals.
The program follows a “4+1” model, that is, students study the TCM program at the Faculty of Health Sciences, in the Semmelweis University for the first four years, and complete clinical practice at the Heilongjiang University of Chinese Medicine in the fifth year.
The first batch of Hungarian graduates have successfully completed their studies and obtained their diplomas in 2016. The two sides renewed their cooperation agreement in 2017.