RTI Radio Taiwan InternationalRTI Radio Taiwan InternationalHealth and disease in Taiwan's past

  • 16 October, 2021

If there’s one thing Taiwan can justly pride itself on, it’s its high standard of public health. There’s cheap, universal healthcare here, and the average Taiwanese person lives to a ripe old age. And COVID-19? No problem—-thanks to wise decisions taken early on, that’s had a minimal impact here. It’s easy to imagine that Taiwan has always been a healthy place like this, but that is far from the case. In fact, just over a century ago, Taiwan had the opposite reputation. People called it “an isle of disease”, an absolute graveyard for visitors and invaders, and a place where even the locals helplessly dropped dead all the time. How did that Taiwan become the clean and healthy place it is today? This is the question at the heart of a new exhibit at the National Taiwan Museum: On the Cusps of Epidemic Crises. Joining us today for a walk through the exhibit is its designer, museum researcher Chang An-chi.