Female Doctor Devotes Herself to Northwest Rural Villages

July 10, 2018  Editor: Wu Shanshan
Female Doctor Devotes Herself to Northwest Rural Villages
Lu Zhimei poses in her clinic in Yulin, northwest China’s Shaanxi Province. [bjwb.bjd.com.cn]


A Beijing-born female doctor established a pediatric department and has devoted herself to practicing in Yulin, northwest China’s Shaanxi Province, for 50 years.

Lu Shengmei, came to northern Shaanxi alone in the 1960s to respond to the call of the times after graduating from Second Medical College (now Capital Medical University).

At that time, the living conditions in the region were so poor that she could hardly adapt at the beginning.

However, she married a young man there in the third year after her arrival, which surprised everyone in Yulin.

"He has the qualities of people in northern Shaanxi; honesty, diligence and kindness," she explained.

He had a strong mind, which gave her encouragement to live in such poor conditions.

After settling down there, Lu soon found that Pertussis and other diseases were all common in newborns across the region and she figured out the reason for this after investigation.

Local people would cut the umbilical cord with scissors that had never been disinfected.

The ignorant practices of people in medical fields, especially working with newborns, deeply shocked her and she was determined to do something for Jiaxian.

Several years later, a pediatrics department was finally founded in Jiaxian under the leadership of Lu and she became the first pediatrician there.

In 1981 Lu returned to her hometown for further study.

She also participated in the first session of the pediatric physician training classes in Shaanxi in 1983.

Due to her achievements, both teachers and classmates wanted to help her transfer to a better hospital, but she declined and chose to return to Jiaxian.

She has now been retired from hospital work for 19 years, while she still persists in practicing in one cave-dwelling (a traditional Chinese house in Loess Plateau regions) near the county hospital.

She insists on not accepting gift money and has refused to abuse antibiotics and hormones.

When she walks along the small road in the county, people are constantly stopping to talk about illness with Lu. She will always stop and answer at any time, sincerely and patiently.

All the local people appreciate her achievements and help for their less developed area.

Lu is now 74 years old. Most of her classmates and colleagues who came to northern Shaanxi with her in the past returned to Beijing for their studies and work.

She lives a wonderful life and actively participates in activities at Jiaxian Senior University.

For her honors, she remains calm and has used all the prize money to buy articles of daily use for people at nursing homes and left-behind children.

In the past few weeks, her old classmates from Beijing Second Medical College called for her to attend the 50-year class reunion this year.

She promised that she will return to Beijing in September this year and attend the party.

"I'm not the best, but I always insisted to the very end for my ideals," she said and would like to share this attitude with all her classmates and teachers.

(Source: Women voice/Translated and edited by Women of China)

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