Founded in 1917, PUMC was the first medical university in China offering an eight-year curriculum leading to an M.D. degree. Its sister institution, CAMS, founded in 1956, is a leading multidisciplinary medical research institution. CAMS and PUMC were merged in 1957 and are interdependent and complementary, providing mutual benefits in medical education and research. Together, CAMS and PUMC run 19 institutes, 6 hospitals, and 7 schools. The institution has a large number of renowned experts and professors who have made outstanding contributions in the fields of health sciences and medicine. Among which are 25 academicians from Chinese Academy of Sciences and China Academy of Engineering Academician, 12 professors in National High-level Talent Special Support Program (Ten Thousand Talents Plan), 22 scholars of the National Overseas High-level Talent Introduction Program (Thousand Talents Plan), 24 professors of the Changjiang Scholars Program established by the Ministry of Education, 41 awardees of the National Outstanding Youth Fund, one member of the Academic Degree Committee of the State Council, 7 members of the disciplinary review groups (including 3 group leaders), 770 doctoral instructors, and 960 master's tutor.
Among the six affiliated hospitals, PUMC Hospital is the oldest, tracing its history back to 1906. It is a full-service general hospital, serving residents of Beijing and the surrounding areas. Each of the other five affiliated hospitals, including the Plastic Surgery Hospital, CAMS Cancer Hospital (CCH), and the Fuwai Hospital in Beijing; the Skin Diseases Hospital in Nanjing; and the Blood Diseases Hospital in Tianjin, has its own specialty.
PUMC is the education arm of the CAMS/PUMC system and works hand in hand with the research institutes in CAMS. Clinical medicine is taught in five PUMC schools (Clinical Medicine, Basic Medicine, Nursing, Public Health, and Continuing Education); a separate graduate school trains nonclinical scientists obtaining a Ph.D. degree. Since its founding in 1917, PUMC has never lost its focus on comprehensive medical education, and it strives to maintain its elite model even while hundreds of other medical schools have cropped up across the country graduating a hodgepodge of “doctors” with various qualifications. PUMC maintains a small incoming class every year - less than 100 medical students and 150 nursing students. Thus, a high school graduate must do very well on the National College Entrance Exams to be admitted to PUMC.
A wide range of projects are undertaken in the 19 CAMS research institutes, in areas such as clinical investigation, basic science, drug discovery, public health, biomedical informatics, and many emerging fields of biomedical science. The projects fall into three categories: 1) Research on the frontier science, including stem cell technology, precision medicine, and genomics; 2) long-term public health studies that sup-port national health policies; examples include epidemiological mapping for cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, and various cancers; and 3) Healthcare quality standards and health management policies, such as the development of a hospital ratings scale and consultancy for health care.
CAMS and PUMC have both withstood numerous changes and challenges over the decades. In their medical and pharmaceutical research, education, and medical practice, CAMS and PUMC maintain close ties with prominent medical colleges and research institutions around the world. For example, from 1917 to the present, PUMC has invited more than 246 world-class scholars and experts to be honorary professors or visiting professors and to share their insights and vision with its faculty and researchers. Among these are former China Medical Board President Buchanan Schwartz, Former U.S. President Bill Clinton, former World Health Organization (WHO) Director-General Lee Jong-Wook, Thai Princess Sirindhorn, and many Nobel Prize winners, including Bengt I. Samuelsson, Harold Varmus, Bruce Beutler, and J. Michael Bishop.