She is one of the 1000 women proposed for the Nobel Peace Price 2005.
She says: “A drop of water easily evaporates, yet gains everlasting energy when embraced by the sea. I am willing to be a drop of water so as to make contributions to the peace and health of all human beings”.
She says also: “A drop of water can easily evaporate, although it gains everlasting energy once it is embraced by the sea. I am willing to be a drop of water in the vast sea to make contributions to the peace and health of all human beings”.
Wenqing Zhang – China
She works in Taiyuan Central Hospital.
In 2003 Wenqing Zhang volunteered to work in the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) wards, staying there for two months. In April 2004 she was promoted to head nurse of the gastroenterology department. Her nursing service to over 3,000 people, spanning more than 17 years, has won her love and respect.
The kind, good-looking, good-humored head nurse is Zhang Wenqing, 35 years old. Since the day of graduation from medical school in Taiyuan, she has cared for patients tirelessly, day after day, for over 17 years. Her ideals of devotion to life, healing the wounded and saving the dying have made her determined to devote herself to the medical and nursing work that she loves.
In 1970 Zhang Wenqing was born in a poor, peasant family. Living in poverty, she suffered from bronchitis and malnutrition. At a visit to the doctor, a nurse once asked her father in contemptuous tone: ‘You are so old, how can you have such a little kid. Is she adopted?’
These unkind words left their imprint on Zhang’s mind, and she was determined to be a good nurse, to help the poor and aged. She spent her childhood in the suburbs of Taiyuan, a childhood characterized by backward living conditions and medicine shortages in villages.
In 1985, 15-year-old Zhang Wenqing enrolled in medical school in Taiyuan. For three years, she studied nursing, psychology and ethics. In 1988 she realized her dream and was assigned to work as a nurse in Taiyuan Central Hospital where she has now been working for over 17 years.
According to Florence Nightingale, a nurse should be pure all her life, loyal to her work, and striving to improve it, she should refrain from doing anything detrimental to the image of a nurse. A nurse should be loyal to patients, keeping their secrets and cooperating with doctors and other medical nurses to render full service to the patient.
Guided by Nightingale’s words, Zhang Wenqing has directly served over 3,000 patients and indirectly, over 10,000 patients. She has created an ideal treatment and nursing environment for patients with her love, care and devotion and for this she has received numerous thank you letters.
Fatigue and filth do not deter her; she is willing to do every kind of nursing job – she helps old people rub their backs, massages them, turns them over when they need a change of side, and assists them in emptying their bowels. Not one of her patients has suffered from bedsores.
Guo Nengchang was old and suffering from incontinence due to cancer of the colon. His family members had wearied of caring for the old man. Zhang nursed him, helping to turn him over, and to relieve himself, cleaning him up and changing the bedclothes without a complaint. Guo Nengchang was touched, and claimed, ‘Nurse Zhang is closer to me than my daughter’. Moved by Zhang’s dedication and perseverance, his sons and daughters gradually changed their attitudes and started to take care of their father.
Another patient, Su Jinzhi, was in hospital for stomach cancer. Tortured by the illness, she wanted to commit suicide and refused to cooperate with the doctors. When Zhang learnt of this she went to the ward and encouraged the old woman to cherish her life and surmount the illness. Every morning and evening she visited the dying old woman, encouraging and consoling her. Three months later, one evening, Su Jinzhi said: ‘Thank you, my child’, and with Zhang’s hand in hers, she serenely closed her eyes for the last time.
In 2003 Zhang was appointed head nurse, becoming the youngest head nurse in the hospital. The slogan of her nursing team was ‘Solidarity, Harmony, Culture and Progress’.
In April 2004, due to her excellent work, Zhang Wenqing was further promoted to head nurse, Department of Gastroenterology. Later, the department was honored with an award for being a model department and for excellence in ward management. The average stay of patients in the hospital had been shortened by four days, with an accompanying 30 percent reduction of expenses. The practice of humanitarian and scientific care may have played its part in the increased number of patients and the consequent 28 percent increase in earnings of the department.
During the spring of 2003, a terrible epidemic enveloped Taiyuan city; the sudden outbreak of SARS threw people’s lives into complete disarray. The Taiyuan Central Hospital accommodated a total of 67 SARS patients and 84 suspected SARS cases. Zhang Wenqing left her 95-year-old father and 3-year-old daughter at home, and volunteered to work in the SARS wards where she stayed for over 2 months.
In keeping with the special conditions of isolation and complex psychology of SARS patients, Zhang and her colleagues set up a special friendly nursing program with zero direct contact. They served patients meals, fed them, cleaned their bodies, helped them in relieving themselves, cutting nails, brushing teeth and washing the face; they were called ‘nurse sisters’ by SARS patients.
The working conditions were extremely difficult and uncomfortable. The thick contamination-proof clothing they wore made them breathless and their bodies were steeped in sweat all day.
Zhang and her colleagues overcame all obstacles with a strong will power and a sense of humanitarian conviction. The Taiyuan Central Hospital created a miracle of zero infection of the medical staff, winning the final victory against SARS.
Most ward patients in Taiyuan Central Hospital are ordinary people. According to the demographic age structure, Chinese society will soon have a large number of aged people, every couple will face the difficult task of taking care of four old parents, especially demanding when the aged parents are ill in hospital. Zhang has a dream that she will set up a hospital for old people that offers a specialized service of accommodation and treatment so that the old and infirm can obtain safe and effective treatment, reducing the burden on their children, and society can exist in harmony. (1000PeaceWomen).
Sorry, I can get no other english information of Wenqing Zhang, China in the internet (being certified it would be the wanted person).