Across China: Doctor's restaurant offers discounts to customers with published academic work

Source: Xinhua| 2017-10-31 15:43:35|Editor: Xiang Bo
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BEIJING, Oct. 31 (Xinhua) -- A renowned cardiologist sits with a former student eating grilled kebabs in Beijing.

A few minutes later, the senior executive editor with the world's leading medical journal, the Lancet, walks in.

At another table, three anesthetists chat about their working day.

They are at a Chinese grillroom named Liuyedao, the Chinese name for the Lancet.

Set up by a group of Chinese doctors who graduated from elite universities, the restaurant has received widespread attention for its unusual promotion strategy.

It offers discounts to customers who have published articles in the world's leading academic journals.

Ever since the promotion started, there have been long queues to get a seat at the restaurant.

"More than 100 doctors visited our grillroom every noon and evening after the discount notice was issued in late September," said manager Tong Baoding. "Doctors outside Beijing have even flown here to eat barbecue."

Tong has a notebook, which he uses to record the details of academic papers his customers have published in. It now fills more than 65 pages.

Wang Jian, a surgeon based in eastern China's Jiangsu Province, and his doctor friends masterminded the project. They are all medicine graduates from Tsinghua and Peking universities, the top universities in China.

Opened in late April, Liuyedao has gained a reputation for healthy cooking. It has a policy of only serving food prepared on the day, and of not reusing cooking oil. To many it seems more like a doctor's club than a restaurant.

"I opened the eatery to attract young doctors to have a chat and relax. I didn't expect that senior doctors also like it. A young doctor may meet his or her teacher here," Wang laughed.

In mid-October, William Summerskill, senior executive editor with the Lancet, attracted by its reputation, attended the restaurant with friends. They ordered around 20 lamb kebabs, according to a waiter at the restaurant.

He paid in full, showing his respect to young Chinese doctors and their great ideas.

Wang admits that he also opened the restaurant to make extra money. "Doctors usually have great working pressure but relatively low pay. I need extra money so I can focus on my job as a doctor," he said.

As night falls, two students enter the restaurant but quickly leave.

"What is this, a hospital waiting room? Everybody is talking about patient and medical cases," one of them said as he left.