Tracing Dongguan’s Western Hospital History

The Dongguan People’s Hospital was initially set up in Wen Shun Fang, Guancheng in 1888. It is one of the oldest Western hospitals in China and was the country’s first German Missionary Hospital.

When it opened, there were rumors that Western doctors cut people open in order to cure diseases, so few local people went to this hospital. Those in dire poverty became the first beneficiaries, due to the hospital’s cheap—sometimes free—medical services. They helped spread the word among locals for the Dongguan People’s Hospital.

The Rhenish Missionary Society, Germans in China and local respectable people raised money to build the new site in Mai Li Zhou, Guancheng, where the hospital was officially relocated to in 1907. The location got its nickname “The Red Building Hospital” because of its Western architectural style with red walls.

In 2011, the Dongguan People’s Hospital Headquarters moved to Wanjiang. The Guancheng old location was converted to Dongguan’s No.9 People’s Hospital, which is now known as the designated hospital for treating COVID-19.