Scientific mindset

Traditional Chinese medicine has its believers and detractors. (Hedy Khoo/SPH)

Western medicine or Chinese medicine? China's TCM regulations spark debate

TCM treatment is said to have played a role in the fight against Covid-19 in China. The Beijing authorities recently sought public views on a set of proposed regulations on traditional Chinese medicine (TCM), which includes articles that mention punishments for those who “defame and slander” TCM. A furore ensued as the public worried about the expansiveness of the proposed law. Oxford University visiting researcher Hayson Wang thinks hard about what lies at the nub of the issue and what TCM proponents must do to bring TCM practice into the mainstream.
A woman wears a face mask as a preventive measure against the Covid-19 coronavirus as she looks at her mobile phone near the entrance of the Peking University People's Hospital in Beijing on 21 February 2020. (Greg Baker/AFP)

Visiting the doctor as a foreigner in China: I wish they will not become complacent

Lianhe Zaobao’s Beijing correspondent Yang Danxu recounts her recent visit seeking medical treatment in Beijing in times of Covid-19. She extrapolates from her experience of being initially turned away and sounds a reminder to officials not to let complacency or a wish to maintain a positive recovery record lead to China facing a recurrent rash of outbreaks.
A man wearing a face mask crosses a road in Wuhan. China has not handled the Covid-19 epidemic well, and its shortcomings are showing. (Reuters)

Covid-19 epidemic exposes China’s shortcomings

Researcher and commentator Wei Da says the recent coronavirus situation serves to remind China that self-reflection and finding the right balance between four key variables — democracy, scientific thinking, rule of law and religion — are greatly needed.
Chinese Premier Li Keqiang wearing a mask and protective suit speaks to medical workers as he visits the Jinyintan hospital where the patients of the new coronavirus are being treated following the outbreak, in Wuhan, January 27, 2020. (Reuters)

Wuhan coronavirus: China needs less politics, more science

Political analyst Zheng Yongnian says adopting a scientific approach in their daily lives would help the Chinese better cope with tests such as the Wuhan coronavirus outbreak. Refusing to take ownership, the people blame the system, as if it was omnipotent and infallible. He warns that if individuals do not adopt the clear-eyed rationality of science, take a good hard look at themselves and chip in their own capacities, China will continue to lack the stoicism and initiative it needs from all quarters to cope with crises.