Nursing studies in Shanghai, China

Ni Hao from Shanghai, China.

Unfortunately the great firewall of China is blocking my internet access, so no pictures can be downloaded. Wifi at our campus is constantly overloaded and mainly  it works after midnight. Google and Facebook are blocked by the Chinese government. If I want to use them I have to pay for a VPN.

Shanghai is a very busy and over populated city. Everythings designed so that it can handle large crowds.  Im sure the Shanghainese have invented new professions that we don’t have back in Finland. For example they employ people to weigh your fruits,  a person to take care of a  patient at a hospital (NOT A NURSE /PRACTICAL NURSE) , a person to get your pick n’ mix sweets  and a person who only cleans tables.  The people in Shanghai have long working hours to earn some chunky monkey. The Shanghainese nurse works approximately 8 or 12 hours. The work isn’t physical and the job description differs alot from the Finnish nurse.

I’m very sad to say that the nursing culture in China differs so much that I wont be taking any skills back home with me.  The only thing i’m taking back is a suitcase full of fake nike’s. The nursing program in China takes 6 years in total to complete. Our campus is full of 16-year old student ‘s  that study ‘practical nursing’  and after three years they can head off to university and get their bachelors degree. Our campus is located in the suburbs of Shanghai in East Zhoupu, it’s about 40 minutes away from down town.  The campus is situated with the locals, so  it’s interesting to see how poorly some shanghainese have to live. Downtown Shanghai is full of chinese millionaires and forgeneirs who have all the luxuries.

Practical training placements have been dissapointing. The wards that we have been on are cardiology, neurosurgery and a nursing home. A Chinese nurses job is to start iv-infusions and take blood samples, nothing else. All other measures and procedures are done by doctors.  Chinese nurses say they have a lot of patients and they are always in a hurry (not true). The nurses in China have always time to sit, chat with co-workers and play on their mobile phones.  The  hospitals and nurses’ profession in China is truly out of date and would need major renewing. It is scary to think that the nurses don’t know what illnesses the patient’s have and what they are taking care of.

It also amazes us, how poor english language skills the nurse’s have. Basically everyone speaks only chinese to us and we reply in english. Most of the time we don’t understand what’s happening. The Chinese find it very funny and start to giggle when we don’t understand Chinese. Practical training should be changed to Practical stareing. The only things we are able to practice are temperature taking, pulse and bp measuring, blood sugar testing, bed sheet changeing and trolley cleaning. Patient’s basic care is done by family members. If the patient hasn’t got family, they can hire a person to take care of them. They are usually older people in the society that can’t get any other job anymore.  Also nursing homes aren’t for those who really need it. The old people don’t have diseases’ and don’t need any care. They just choose to live in a *hotel* full of activites, that they pay for. When they do get dementia, they are transfered from the nursing home back to their families so that the children can take care of them.

I love the international spirit in Shanghai and all the foods we get to taste. I’ve also enjoyed learning traditional chinese medicine; acupuncture, cupping and herbs. Living, exploring, eating, partying and travelling have been experiences that I wouldn’t change on my trip.

The practice and school aren’t suitable for nursing students. I’ve learnt so far a lot of patients and keeping quiet.

XIE XIE, Aurora





1 thought on “Nursing studies in Shanghai, China

  1. Hi, was your school called ‘shanghai institute of medicine and health science’? I’m a foreigner in shanghai and was looking forward to taking the three year US sino nursing program bc it says I can take Nclex RN after graduation.

    Is this school that bad ?!?! Were you an instructor there ?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *