- BC Games
Traditional Chinese Medicine school sought for B.C.
Officials at Kwantlen Polytechnic University have made a play to bring B.C.’s first school of Traditional Chinese Medicine to Richmond.
The B.C. government’s 2013 throne speech promised to partner with a post-secondary institution to develop a centre of learning for the historic health profession. In a news release last month, the Ministry of Advanced Education announced it had “received submissions” after inviting all 25 of B.C.’s publicly funded post-secondary institutions to submit proposals.
One of those submissions is from Kwantlen.
“If we are awarded that program, we will be offering it in Richmond. It makes great sense with some of the synergies that we already have on campus,” said Jeff Norris, chief advancement officer at KPU.
Kwantlen is proposing to work with a top Traditional Chinese Medicine school in Beijing, China to initially establish a diploma program, with the potential to develop it into a degree program.
Kwantlen officials expect the province will announce the winning bid in four to six weeks.
“I think this is a good match for Richmond,” said Coun. Chak Au, following Norris’s presentation at Richmond City Hall Monday. “It’s good as part of the health system, it’s good culturally and it’s good economically for the city.”
Traditional Chinese Medicine has a history dating as far back as 3,000 years. Practitioners focus on health promotion, illness prevention and treatment through natural remedies that include acupuncture, Chinese herbal medicine and massage.
The B.C. government designated Traditional Chinese Medicine as a health profession in 2000, the first jurisdiction in North America to do so, noted Au. The profession is now regulated by the College of Traditional Chinese Medicine Practitioners and Acupuncturists of British Columbia.
Au sees potential here for the growing and processing of Chinese herbs, and a population mix that already supports both Western and Eastern forms of treatment and therapies.
“I see a real bright future for Chinese medicine,” he said.
Richmond Centre MLA Teresa Wat, Minister of International Trade and Minister Responsible for Asia Pacific Strategy and Multiculturalism, said in the government’s Sept. 27 news release that Traditional Chinese Medicine is growing in popularity.
“Having a school of Traditional Chinese Medicine located in a public post-secondary institution will further strengthen the reputation of British Columbia both at home and on the international platform.”