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Profile: Chinese orthopedist's double-Olympic adventure
May. 28, 2022
Peking University, May 28, 2022: Dang Yu, an orthopedist at the Peking University People's Hospital, considers his double-Olympic adventure to be among the highlights of his career.

In 2008, Dang volunteered to serve as a doctor for the volleyball athletes when Beijing hosted the Summer Olympics. Fourteen years later, he served again, this time at the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics.

Carrying a 15-kg medical kit on his back and wearing crampons over his shoes, the 47-year-old climbed the ice slope at the National Sliding Center to provide timely medical assistance to athletes.

At the Yanqing competition zone of Beijing 2022, a 1.9-km sliding track for bobsleigh, skeleton and luge winds down the mountain, featuring 16 angled curves in the shape of a mythical Chinese dragon. Those traveling down the track can hit speeds of over 100 km per hour.

"We were required to reach the location of any accident at the venue within 4 minutes, but at first nobody could even stand firmly on the icy track," said Dang.

At the Beijing Winter Olympics and Paralympics, nearly 1,000 medical staff from hospitals affiliated with Peking University participated in the provision of healthcare services.

"We didn't win a medal, but we helped those in need, making people from all over the world feel our hospitality," Dang noted.

About 32 years ago, Dang worked as a "pixel" on the background screen at the opening ceremony of the 1990 Beijing Asian Games, the first time the Chinese capital had hosted an important sports event since the founding of New China in 1949.

"At that time, many middle school students, including me, each held several boards. We turned the boards in response to unified commands, creating over 40 backgrounds during the ceremony," he recalled.

While at the Beijing 2022 opening ceremony, a large electronic ground screen at the National Stadium -- or the Bird's Nest -- showed exquisite designs and beautiful colors with a strong visual impact. "From 1990 to 2022, I saw the national development and the progress in science and technology," Dang said.

His volunteer experience during the Asian Games, although only at the opening ceremony, inspired him to serve at Beijing 2008. Already an attending orthopedist, Dang contributed to the Games as a medical leader at the indoor stadium of Beijing Jiaotong University, a training venue for men's volleyball at the event.

He offered medical services to athletes from various countries, including China and Brazil. "It was amazing to personally get involved in the Olympics. I felt the friendship beyond national boundaries and the Olympic spirit of strength and solidarity," he said.

From 2008 to 2022, from the blue clothes of a volunteer to the red outfit of a medical officer, Dang sees his double-Olympic experience as reflecting his personal growth. It has also been an opportunity to witness China's development, including the evolution and expansion of its competition organizing capabilities.

Following this year's Winter Olympics, Dang returned to his position at the Peking University People's Hospital in mid-March. He conducts around 10 surgical procedures each week, and is on standby to support the mass nucleic acid testing at communities to contain the recent resurgence of COVID-19 infections in Beijing.

"At the Olympics, I contributed as much as possible to ensure a safe and splendid Games. In my daily work, I strive to fulfill my responsibility as a doctor," Dang said. "The double-Olympic experience has taught me to stay passionate in life and never give up."

Source: Xinhua