Xinjiang medical team keeps patients in Wuhan busy with dancing
By Zhou Jiaxin, Zhu Shuying

A medical team from northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region has turned a corner in the lobby of a makeshift hospital in Wuhan, the epicenter of the new coronavirus outbreak, into a dancing hall.

A video of the medical professionals dancing with patients has gone viral on Chinese social media, inspiring others to follow suit.

Ipare Ehmet, a nurse on the team, regretted that she didn't join the dance routine that day because she was on the night shift. The 36-year-old acted in easy moves to ensure more patients could follow her steps.

"The thrill ran through me once they followed me," she said. "I really wish I could dance with everyone."

Patients also hope to dance regularly to improve their physical and metal condition.

One patient who requested anonymity said when they heard Uygur nurses are motivating them to dance, she asked others to join in. She said members of the Uygur ethnic group are talented at dancing, singing and performing.

"It is hard for patients stuck in here," said Wang Jian, the head nurse of a local hospital. "We want to come up with something to keep them busy as part of our work."

Ipare Ehmet stands at the Shanghai bund. /CGTN Photo

Ipare Ehmet stands at the Shanghai bund. /CGTN Photo

Patients with a mild condition are now given up to an hour every day for pastime activities.

"We are so moved," said one patient in reference to medical workers working hard and doing everything around the hospital, including cleaning the floors and toilets.

"These medical workers check on us three to four times a day, asking if we've taken our medicine and sending us masks," another said. "Very thoughtful of them!"

Long medical shifts are not convenient.

"We can barely breathe in these multi-layered protective suits," Wang said. "That's why patients show us empathy."

"One patient said he fears nothing and is very confident in recovery, which moved me," Ehmet said. "I hope all patients can recover and go back home soon."