Department of CSD: China university professors visit Hawaiʻi, continuing collaboration that established first accredited speech pathology program in China
Pictured: Kunming Medical University and University of Hawaiʻi medical school faculty signal a “thumbs up” during a visit to the John A. Burns School of Medicine in December, 2016.
by Vina Cristobal, University Health Partners of Hawaiʻi
On December 5, professors from the Kunming Medical University (KMU) in southwestern China visited JABSOM to continue their collaboration with the UH medical school. This followed KMU’s groundbreaking accomplishment — achieved with assistance from the University of Hawaiʻi medical school — establishing China’s first-ever accredited academic program in speech and hearing.
“There are 1.3 billion people in China and the government is strategically trying to improve the training of health professionals, especially rehab professionals in China,” said Dr. Zhiyong Luo, Director of Rehabilitation Medicine and professor at KMU.“Most importantly, the people really need rehabilitation.”
This past year, the University of Hawai’i medical school’s Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders (CSD) has focused heavily on building international bridges with speech-language programs in other countries, including Japan, Taiwan and China.
Faculty from KMU toured JABSOM in the company of their hosts from the Communication Sciences and Disorders Department, visiting some of the school’s clinical training facilities and sampling the library’s new stress-reducing activities (‘Brain Busters’). They also were introduced to some of the UH medical students. Dr. Luo also did a brief demonstration of tai chi, a common relaxation technique in China.
This partnership between KMU and JABSOM has spanned two years, after department chair Henry Lew, MD, PhD, signed a memorandum of understanding with KMU in 2014 to create a speech and hearing program in China. Afterwards, professors from the Department of CSD helped to create the syllabus and curriculum for KMU’s speech and hearing program and to train the faculty in teaching speech pathology.
“Right now, we are proud to say that we have the first accredited speech therapy program in China,” Dr. Luo said.
About University Health Partners
University Health Partners of Hawaiʻi is the faculty practice of the University of Hawaiʻi, supporting the clinical departments of family medicine, internal medicine, surgery, obstetrics, gynecology, geriatrics, hyperbaric medicine, audiology and speech therapy, psychiatry, psychology, and Native Hawaiian Health. Our faculty healers provide high-quality healthcare while also training the future health care workforce for Hawaiʻi. Clinical research conducted in our training sites constantly improves our ability to diagnose and treat health issues that most commonly impact the citizens of Hawaiʻi and the Pacific.
To reach the Speech and Hearing Clinic and Communication Sciences & Disorders Administration:
CSD Administrative Offices: 808-692-1581
The clinic is located at:
677 Ala Moana Blvd. Suite 625, Honolulu, Hawaiʻi 96813