Degree change mooted
The current medical education system, which permits students of traditional medicine to pursue a double major in Western medicine, may be scrapped next year and graduates might also be barred from taking part in Western medicine accreditation examinations in the future, officials said on Sunday. Ho Cho-fei (何卓飛), director of the Department of Higher Education, confirmed that the Department of Health (DOH) had suggested the change to the ministry. In a move designed to control the number of Western medicine practitioners, the department suggested that the ministry prohibit local medical colleges and universities from allowing students in their traditional medicine departments to pursue a simultaneous degree in Western medicine. Ho said the proposal would be put up for discussion at a meeting of deans of medical colleges in the near future. The DOH said it would propose amendments to the Physicians Act (醫師法) to bar graduates of traditional medicine with a double degree in Western medicine from taking part in accreditation examinations to allow them to practice Western medicine.
Pingpu target candidates
Advocates for the rights of Pingpu plains Aborigines yesterday urged municipality election candidates to support the Pingpu appeal for official recognition of their status as Aborigines. Lin Sheng-yi (林勝義), a historian and a descendant of the Pingpu Ketagalan tribe, called candidates running in the Nov. 27 elections to include Pingpu-related policies in their campaign platforms. Showing a demographic map of the Pingpu, Lin said they represent a group of “silent voters” whose number may exceed a million if a wider definition were applied. “The Pingpu will automatically turn themselves into supporters of the candidates who make known their Pingpu policy within 10 days and support granting official recognition to Pingpu plains Aborigines,” Lin said at an event staged on Ketagalan Boulevard in front of the Presidential Office.
Cycling festival planned
Taiwan will hold its first cycling festival next month to boost international tourism, the Tourism Bureau said in a statement released over the weekend. The Taiwan Cycling Festival is scheduled to run from Oct. 16 through Oct. 24 in the east of the country, the statement said. The Taiwan Cup, a professional road race during the festival, has invited 19 teams from 10 countries to compete, including Dutch team Rabobank, who grabbed third place at this year’s Tour de France. A total of 150 cyclists from Taiwan and abroad will join the 210km tour. Amateur riders can sign up for two recreational races that aim to promote cycling and physical fitness.
Thai group gets donation
The government donated US$10,000 to a Thai wildlife conservation group yesterday as part of its efforts to help protect elephants and their natural habitat in the southwestern province of Kanchanaburi. It marked the third consecutive year that Taiwan has given funding to the Elephant Conservation Network (ECN), which works to secure the future of elephants and their forest ecosystem in the Salakpra Wildlife Sanctuary. Yin Hsin-yuan (尹新垣), a section chief at Taiwan’s representative office in Thailand, presented the donation on behalf of the Council of Agriculture to Jittin Ritthirat, an ECN project director, at the organization’s office in Salakpra.