International doctors look to Oklahoma for new advances

Tuesday, April 8th 2008, 8:08 pm
By: News 9

By Melissa Maynarich, NEWS 9

Doctors are in Oklahoma from half way around the world, watching and learning from the state's physicians. The six international visitors were at Integris Baptist, on their first day of a six month educational observation.

"I want to learn the new technology," said Surgical Oncologist Jun Wang.

Some of the technology the international doctors are seeing in the Emergency Room at Integris is familiar to them, but many of the tools here in Oklahoma are not available in China.

"They have a very difficult task, because of money, because of lack of equipment," said Jim Claflin, the exchange program's coordinator. "So it's much more difficult to diagnose and treat than it is for us."

The six Chinese doctors have come from the Gansu Province in the middle of China, a poorer region than the nation's coastal cities.

For most of the doctors, the six month visit is their first time to Oklahoma City.

"I think Oklahoma is very beautiful and clean," said one of the doctors, Li Wei.

According to Claflin, the Gansu Province has one million barefoot doctors that are actually taking care of one billion people.  

Although most of their time will be spent in the hospital, the Chinese doctors also hope to learn about the culture in Oklahoma, and see the sights beyond the ER.

The state of Oklahoma and the Gansu Province are sister states with a friendship that has lasted 23 years. In the exchange program -- Chinese doctors travel to Oklahoma, and later in the year, Oklahoma doctors will go there.