Retirement Symposium for Professor Meei-shia Chen (English version)

Retirement Symposium for Professor Meei-shia Chen  (English version)

Retirement Symposium for Professor Meei-shia Chen

Current Struggles and Future Goals:

The Fundamental Problems and the Transformation of Taiwan’s Public Health and Healthcare Systems Under Capitalism   

 

  • Date: November 24-25 (Fri-Sat), 2017
  • Location: National Cheng Kung University

International Conference Hall Lecture Room II

Tainan, Taiwan

Taiwan Association for Promoting Public Health.

  • Co-Organizers: College of Public Health National Taiwan University、

National Taiwan University Graduate Institute of National Development、

Taipei Medical University Graduate Institute of Humanities in Medicine、

Department of Health, Kaohsiung City Government、

Reseach Institute for Humanities and Social sciences, Ministry of Science

and Technology.

 

Background

In 2003, the SARS epidemic hit Taiwan, setting off alarm bells about the public health and healthcare systems in Taiwan. The outbreak revealed fundamental problems with the public health and healthcare systems, such as commodification, marketization, and medicalization. It was this moment that brought together a group of dedicated people with high aspirations, passion, and a sense of duty—Professor Meei-shia Chen, Professor Shiaw Shin Lin, along with many public health faculty and students from National Cheng Kung University (NCKU) and other universities. In 2003, they abandoned the ivory tower of academia and together confronted the public, launching “Public Health Education at Community Universities.” With “liberation of public health knowledge and transformation of the public health system” as the ultimate goal, they have promoted community public health education, dedicated knowledge to the public, established connections with people at the frontlines of public health and healthcare, and collectively reflected upon the issues and challenges in Taiwanese society and thereby devoted themselves to community education. Their movement has sowed the seeds of public health transformation throughout Taiwan.

The members of this movement are not only educators who have devoted themselves to serving the people, but also hard-working individuals who have put their aspirations into practice. In the midst of our capitalist society, in which people tend to look after themselves, Meei-shia and other committed comrades selflessly advocated collective action and collective wisdom in the public health and healthcare fields. In academia, Meei-shia and her graduate students practiced collective creation by diving into rigorous research together, critically analyzing the impact of capitalism on the public health and healthcare systems. In 2008, they established Taiwan Association for Promoting Public Health (TAPPH), which allowed them to join forces with many more dedicated people. Together, they have strived to break free from the shackles of capitalism, worked hard to mentor younger partners of the movement, and worked toward building a team that could persistently serve Taiwanese society and unite the powers to bring about transformation.

The collective mission “to liberate public health knowledge and to transform the public health system” is entering its 15th year. Recently, Meei-shia’s academic career at NCKU came to an end; however, we all understand that although she is retired, she will stay active, and will never stop working for her cause! Therefore, she and the many partners who are committed to this mission view her retirement not as the conclusion of public health practice, but rather as a starting point to look back, envision the future, and embark again. For this symposium, we have specially invited nine of Meei-shia’s former graduate students from her 20 years as a faculty research adviser at NCKU Department of Public Health. They will share their previous research findings from critical analyses of fundamental problems with the public health and healthcare systems under capitalism (see Program of Events, Critical Analysis of Capitalism Sessions 1-3). These fellow activists are mostly seed teachers from “Public Health Education at Community Universities” or TAPPH. Some were studying at NCKU Department of Public Health when they were inspired by the ideals and passion to serve as seed teachers, while others were already seed teachers, who subsequently studied at NCKU Department of Public Health in order to understand the theories behind their practice, and finally returned to contribute to the collective cause. The research by Meei-shia and her students provided guidance for the work of “Public Health Education at Community Universities” and TAPPH, allowing those who had dedicated themselves to the cause to gain a more profound understanding of their public health practice. A 15-year veteran of this collective mission and Chief Secretary of TAPPH, Yi-Yeh Chen, as well as representatives of the seed teachers will also attend the symposium to share the results of their collective practice.

In the words of Confucius: “People of virtue can never be isolated; they are sure to have like-minded companions.” We will also invite many people who have contributed to the collective cause, including seed-teacher educators, seed teachers, scholars who are concerned about Taiwan society, and those who work at the frontlines of public health and healthcare, to serve as commentators in the symposium. Through the hard work of the fellow activists behind this public health movement in Taiwan, the alarm bells that were set off by the SARS epidemic were heard globally, alerting dedicated people who have been fighting for the health of communities throughout the world. We have specially invited Dr. Howard Waitzkin (Distinguished Professor at the University of New Mexico, adjunct professor of Internal Medicine at the University of Illinois, practicing physician, and recipient of the Leo G. Reeder Award for Distinguished Scholarship in Medical Sociology in the U.S.) and Dr. Ling Li (Professor at Peiking University School of National Development) to give keynote addresses and to join our discussions. They likewise recognize that capitalism is harming people’s health, and they are also practicing public health by discovering fundamental problems and forcefully criticizing capitalism and transforming society.

Let us look back, envision the future, and embark again! As a result of the persistent work done by Meei-shia and many dedicated partners over the years, a path forward has already been carved. However, the path is yet rugged and covered with the thorns of capitalism. In order to cut through these thorns, we need more partners to join in and together commit to the research and reform of the fundamental problems of Taiwan’s public health and healthcare systems.

At this 15th year of our movement, we invite you to join us to reflect on the steps and strides we have made in the “liberation of public health knowledge and transformation of the public health system,” and to together take our path to “collectively create, persistently go on the long march, and make history” for the years and decades to come.

Program of Events

2017/11/24 (Friday)
09:00-09:30 Registration
09:30-09:50 Opening Remarks
Huey-Jen Su / President, National Cheng Kung University

Tsung-Hsueh Lu / Professor, Department of Public Health, National Cheng Kung University College of Medicine

Chin-Hua Tong/ President, Taiwan Association for Promoting Public Health

09:50-11:30 Keynote Address 1
A Public Health Scholar’s Journey from Theory to collective Practice Under Capitalism :

A Historical and Political Economy Perspective

Meei-Shia Chen / Distinguished Professor, Department of Public Health, National Cheng Kung University College of Medicine

Moderator

Tsung-Hsueh Lu / Professor, Department of Public Health, National Cheng Kung University College of

                Medicine.

Director, Health Bureau of Taichung City Government

Commentators

Chi-Ping Tu / Editor-in-chief, Critique and Transformation

Li-Fang Liang / Assistant Professor, Institute of Health and Welfare Policy, National Yang-Ming

University

11:30-12:00 Acknowledgements and Retrospect

(Student Representative and Seed Teacher Representative)

12:00-13:30 Lunch
13:30-14:50 Critical Analysis of Capitalism

Session 1: Health Inequality

The Culture and Health Problems of Drinking Among Taiwanese Aborigines –

Overturning the Mainstream Discourse (I)

Tzu-Li Chen / Full-time Activist, Taiwan Association for Promoting Public Health

Examining the Health of Taiwanese Aborigines: the Case of the Tuberculosis Problem –

Overturning the Mainstream Discourse (II)

Wei-Ping Kao / Full-time Activist, Taiwan Association for Promoting Public Health

The Fundamental Logic Behind the Perpetual Abuse of International Workers :

A Study of RCA Labor in Taiwan

Chia-Min Liao / Regional Supervisor of Veterinary Sales, Companion Animal Department, GoFar CO.,

              LTD

Moderator

Mei-Chun Liu / Professor, Institute for Labour Research, National Chengchi University

Commentators

Yih-Ren Lin / Associate Professor and Director, Graduate Institute of Humanities in Medicine,

Taipei Medical University

Chin-Fen Chang / Research Fellow, Institute of Sociology, Academia Sinica

14:50-15:20 Break
15:20-17:00 Keynote Address 2
Healthy China and Deepening Medical Reform: The Opportunities of China’s Golden Age

Ling Li / Professor, School of National Development, Peking University

Moderator

Te-Pei Huang / Professor and Director, Department of Social Development, Shih Hsin University

Commentators

Mei-Chun Liu / Professor, Institute for Labour Research, National Chengchi University

Chia-Chen Chou / Assistant Professor, Graduate Institute of National Development, National Taiwan

University

 

 

2017/11/25 (Saturday)
09:00-09:30 Registration
09:30-11:00 Keynote Address 3
Medical Care and Public Health Under Global Capitalism and the Collective Efforts to

Construct an Alternative System

Howard Waitzkin / Distinguished Professor, Department of Sociology, The University of New Mexico

              Recipient, Leo G. Reeder Award for Distinguished Scholarship in Medical Sociology

Moderator

Meei-Shia Chen / Distinguished Professor, Department of Public Health, National Cheng Kung

University College of Medicine

Commentator

Tsung-Hsueh Lu / Professor, Department of Public Health, National Cheng Kung University College of

               Medicine.

Jian-Ming Tseng / President, Association for Taiwan Social Studies.

Kuan-Hsing Chen/ Professor, Graduate Institute for Social Research and Cultural Studies, National

               Chiao Tung University.

11:00-11:10 Break
11:10-12:30 Critical Analysis of Capitalism

Session 2: Privatization and Medicalization

How the Long-Term Care System in Taiwan Turned into a Form of Financial Transaction:

A Political Economy Analysis

Sang-Ju Yu / President, Taiwan Society of Home Health Care

A Critical Historical Analysis of How the Tuberculosis Control System in Taiwan Transformed from a Public Health Responsibility to an Individual Responsibility

Ching-Ching Huang / Chief Nurse (Retired), Division of Epidemics, Department of Health,

Kaohsiung City Government

The Transformation of Health Centers in Taiwan: From the Public Service of Public Health to the Private Profits of Free-Market Healthcare

Chih-Bin Tsai / Project Assistant, Division of Epidemics, Department of Health, Kaohsiung City

Government

Moderator

Hui-Min Liu / Standing Director, Taiwan Association for Promoting Public Health

Commentators

Ruei-Yuan Syue / Administrative Deputy Minister, Ministry of Health and Welfare

Chih-Hsing Ho / Assistant Research Fellow, Institute of European and American Studies,

Academia Sinica

12:30-13:30 Lunch

 

 

 

 

13:30-14:50 Critical Analysis of Capitalism

Session 3: The Impact on the Professional Development of Healthcare

A Historical Analysis of Taiwanese Physicians’ Transition from Self-Employment to Employment:

The Impact of Capitalization on the Labor Conditions of the Physician Profession

Kuo-Tung Fan / Director, Center for Sedation and Anesthesia Education and Training, ABC Dental

The Struggle to Develop Taiwan’s Clinical Psychologist Profession in the Shadow of Psychiatrists:

A Comparative Analysis with the United States

Kuang-Yun Chang / Teacher, Hualien County Kuo Feng Junior High School

The Impact of Implementing the Policy to Separate Drug Dispensing from Medical Practice on the Pharmacy Profession: The Paradox of “De-Professionalization”

Wen-Horng Hsieh / Planning Manager, Calo Psychiatry Hospital

Moderator

Chin-Hua Tong / President, Taiwan Association for Promoting Public Health

Commentators

Hui-Wen Pai / Director, Chia-Yi Christian Hospital Labor Union

14:50-15:10 Break
15:10-16:00 Keynote Address 4
Liberating Public Health Knowledge and transforming the Public Health System:

The Theory and Practice of Taiwan Association for Promoting Public Health

Yi-Yeh Chen / Secretary-general, Taiwan Association for Promoting Public Health

Moderator

Hsiu-Chih Liu / Vice President, Taiwan Association for Promoting Public Health

16:00-16:40 Panel Discussion on Local Action
The Agency of Seed Teachers: The Fourteen-Year Practice of Collective Creation and

transforming the Public Health System

1.      The Connection of the Public Sector and Non-Governmental Organizations

2.      Public Health Short Plays and Community Organization

3.      Community University Classes and Instructor Organization

Seed Teachers from North, Central, and South Regions of Taiwan / Taiwan Association for

                                                          Promoting Public Health

16:40-17:30 Thinking Globally, Acting Locally: The Theory and Practice of Taiwan Association for Promoting Public Health, and Looking Ahead at Actions and Strategies for the Next Ten Years
Moderator

Yu-Ling Ku / Director, Taiwan Association for Promoting Public Health

Panelists

Meei-shia Chen / Distinguished Professor, Department of Public Health, National Cheng Kung

University College of Medicine

Howard Waitzkin / Distinguished Professor, Department of Sociology, The University of New Mexico

Wen-Hsia Wang / Professor, Department of History, National Cheng Kung University

17:30 Seed Teacher Reunion and Dinner

 

 

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