Kuang Tien General Hospital celebrated its centenary and Nurses Day with a nurse uniform fashion show on May 8, during which nurses wore historical nurses uniforms. The first nurse to ever work at the hospital, Chen Chuang Mei-ying, also gave a speech at the event.
Kuang Tien was established in 1913. Originally called Ren Sheng Hospital, it changed its name to Yang Chen Hospital in 1921, but because of Japanese rule the name had to be changed once again in 1941 to its current name. In its early days, there were only three beds and the hospital’s founder and first president, Wang Tung-chung, had to ride a horse around to visit patients in far away areas. His son, Wang Yu-lin, eventually took over the hospital and expanded its scope when he founded central Taiwan’s first girls’ college for nursing, which was formerly known as Hungkuang Junior College of Nursing and eventually became what is now Hungkuang University (HKU).
The 72-year-old Chen Chuang started working at the hospital after graduating from elementary school, and served as the hospital’s first nurse. She said that in the early days there was no system of certification, and that it was very grueling work because a single nurse was in charge of taking care of patients, registering them, taking money, and packaging medicine.
At the fashion show, employees wore old Florence Nightingale-style nurse uniforms, nurse uniforms with puffy sleeves, as well as the current uniform of round-collar shirts with pants. One of the nurses, Yang Ya-li, said today’s nurse uniforms consist of pants, which makes things much more convenient, adding that different hospital departments have various styles and colors of nurse uniforms.
1. fashion show n. phr.
服裝表演 (fu2 zhuang1 biao2 yan3)
例: The company will show its new line of summer clothing at the fashion show.
2. establish v.
成立 (cheng2 li4)
例: The club was established in 1972.
3. symbolize v.
象徵 (xiang4 zheng1)
例: Certain flowers symbolize specific emotions or occasions.
HKU’s Department of Nursing held a crowning ceremony on May 8, during which teachers placed nurse caps on students’ heads to symbolize passing on the tradition of protecting lives. The department head, Chen Shu-ling, said that in Taiwan’s hospitals nurses have to take care of up to 20 patients at a time, which is two to three times the number of patients a nurse is in charge of in the US, Australia and Japan. She also said that a nurse in Taiwan will usually only work as a nurse for six to seven years, which is the lowest in all of Asia, and that the government should pay more attention to these issues.
(Liberty Times, Translated by Kyle Jeffcoat)